Monday, 11th December 2017. 1:59:27pm ET
Reviews Movie Reviews Wrong Turn
Movie: Wrong Turn
Company: 20th Century Fox
Format: DVD
Reviewer: Joshua Heinrich
Date: 2/23/04

Wrong Turn, starring Buffy the Vampire Slayer alum Eliza Dushku, is an above average slasher film that borrows from the plots of a number of other classic horror films, most notably The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. When a young doctor taking a dirt road on his way to an interview crashes into a car full of teens/twenty-somethings on vacation, they unfortunately cross paths with a family of deformed (and, of course, super-human) inbred men living in a cabin deep in the woods. After a few members of the group are killed, the rest struggle for survival as they are hunted by the deranged, bloodthirsty family.

Granted, if you've ever seen a slasher before, you can pretty much predict who's going to live in the end as well as fairly accurately guess when to say "look out behind you". On the other hand, you'll also be quite used to the general lack of character development and background information found here. It's also true that, either on purpose or by coincidence, much of the film's premise and story seems to have been notably inspired by The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. In some cases, the influences may even be reversed (you'll even find a scene featuring a field full of victims' cars that is eerily similar to a scene from the 2003 Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake that was released after Wrong Turn). Still, the acting is fairly strong, the film is well paced and well written for what it is, and, despite its predictability, it often consciously avoids a number of cliches found in similar horror films. The soundtrack isn't necessarily notable, but is effective. The film's visuals are well done and even stylish at times, at least by slasher standards. Overall, it's an undeniably familiar yet entertaining film.

In the end, Wrong Turn is just one among a mountain of slasher films churned out over the last few years. However, its repeated avoidance of slasher cliches, decent plot, and good sense of pacing set this one above most other recent films in its class (including the recent Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake). It's probably one of the most enjoyable straightforward slasher films I've seen in the last few years. It's also likely more palatable to non-slasher horror fans than your typical slasher film. Don't expect anything shockingly original, but this one's worth checking out.


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