Wrong Turn 2: Dead End – DVD Review

Available at Amazon.com

Director

Joe Lynch

Cast

Erica Leerhsen Nina Papas
Henry Rollins Col. Dale Murphy
Texas Battle Jake Washington
Daniella Alonso Amber
Aleksa Palladino Mara
Steve Braun Jonesy
Crystal Lowe Elena
Matthew Currie Holmes M
Ken Kirzinger Pa

DVD Release Date: October 9, 2007
Rating: Unrated
Running Time: 104 Minutes

The Movie

Reality TV is the hottest thing going in the world today and every scenario imaginable has been used for their settings. Deserted islands, a house shut off from the rest of humanity, and a race around the world are just a few of the ideas that have been used. But what about setting competitors into the wilderness at the end of the world and seeing if they can survive The Apocalypse.

Six people gather together in the woods of West Virginia all ready to compete for $100,000 and master the apocalypse. Retired Col. Dale Murphy hosts the show and the competitors each have on a radioactive card around their necks that measures whether they survive or perish. Completing different tasks set throughout the forest will help their chances of survival and get them closer to the money.

The group of misfits contains every typical stereotype possible as there is the lesbian, the sincere jock, the annoying sex hound, the shy girl, the whore, and the bitch with a heart of gold. None of them like one another yet they must work together in order to survive the game and win the money. Little do they know what lurks in those woods for them is much more real then any make believe end of the world game.

West Virginia’s wooded hills hold a lot more wildlife then just trees, and that doesn’t mean the birds and bears. In all actuality, there are no bears, birds, or any other types of animals in the forest. All that inhabits them is a family of cannibalistic mutants that prey on the unsuspecting campers, tourists, and even game show players that wander into their territory. Just trying to survive the game turns into a major game of survival as the players do everything they can just to stay alive.

One of the most pleasant surprises so far this year in the horror genre has to be Wrong Turn 2. High expectations were not something I had going in because it just didn’t seem like this would be leaps and bounds above a film that was made four years ago and not even that incredible. It was really good to be proved wrong though as there was a good storyline, likable characters, and a hell of a lot of blood and gore. A warning right now to everyone; if you don’t like blood and guts, then this isn’t the film for you.

The entire first half an hour or so of the film almost lived up to my thoughts of this being total crap. All the different random characters, some really cheesy lines, and an extremely corny reality show gimmick was just almost too much to stand. But from the first death scene on, Wrong Turn 2 just takes a turn in the right direction (pardon the pun). A little bit of history is given to each character, no matter how annoying they may be, that really makes you connect with them and care whether they live or die. That is something every horror film should always do and it would automatically make it that much better.

Another thing that makes this film good is how it starts off as the clichéd horror film and then turns into something you’d never expect. Those you would normally expect to die don’t end up biting it, and every death is a slight bit different making each kill that much more fun to watch. Throw in a history of the mutants that we finally learn where they come from (that we didn’t get in Wrong Turn), and it is clear now why they are in the woods and not just randomly placed there for no reason.

Finally let me not forget what makes this entire film and that is Henry Rollins. One of the coolest individuals on the face of the planet plays his part as retired Col. Dale Murphy to sheer perfection. At first he also is right there along with the rest of the cheese at the beginning of the film, but gets into his role big time as the film picks up speed for the whole second half. His intensity, hard-nosed action, and just overall bad-ass hero demeanor make Wrong Turn 2 one-part 80’s slasher, one part new-age horror, and one hell of a fun ride.

The Video

The film is shown in 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen format and looks good for the most part. All the bright colors of the forest and wildlife look bright and colorful while darker scenes look black, but not too dark. One major problem is that there is a great deal of pixilation during chase scenes through the woods.

The Audio

The film is heard in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround sound and comes through great. All the grunts of the mutants, the whisping of the leaves, and even the air being cut by flying arrows can be heard from all around you. Some of the creepiest moments are simply hearing a mutant make a slight noise behind you or that eerie mutant girl’s laughter coming from all around the room.

Special Features

Audio Commentary – Director Joe Lynch sits down with stars Erica Leerhsen and Henry Rollins to discuss their thoughts on the film. They really seemed to enjoy making the film and it shows in how they talk about it. I like that they seem so passionate about what they did as if it was going into a wide theatrical release, yet it only ended up going straight to DVD. That is why I believe it turned out so well; because those involved gave a damn about it and it shows here.

Making Gore Look Good – An eleven minute featurette all about the special effects in the film. This was a really good feature as it looked as if the SFX guys were just enjoying themselves beyond belief with the exploding chests, sailing arrows, and blood splattering all over the place. It really is rather cool how they accomplish doing some of the effects and making them look so real with things that you’d never think would work.

Theatrical Trailer

The Inside Pulse

If you are a fan of the first film or just a big-time horror fan in general, then you really need to pick up a copy of Wrong Turn 2. It has enough entrails and blood splatters to make any gore-hound a happy camper. Now I had a screener copy of the film and think there are actually a good number of special features that weren’t included on the version I got. By doing some research though it was noticed that my copy was missing another commentary, some more trailers, and maybe three or four more featurettes. So there is even more of a reason to pick up this DVD because it will be packed with a lot of extra stuff that I didn’t even get to tell you about. I did find a cool Easter Egg though that was a lot of fun. Wrong Turn 2 is fun for even the non-horror fans as it isn’t overly scary; just a tad bit with some awesome gore and kill scenes. Not to mention a pretty cool homage to The Texas Chainsaw Massacre that involves Erica Leerhsen who happened to be in the remake of said film. Ok, I’ve said enough, get the DVD or a mutant will cut you in half literally.

The DVD Lounge’s Ratings for Wrong Turn 2: Dead End
CATEGORY
RATING
(OUT OF 10)
THE MOVIE

8
THE VIDEO

6
THE AUDIO

9
THE EXTRAS

5
REPLAY VALUE

7
OVERALL
6.5
(NOT AN AVERAGE)

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