I have to be honest, I had no idea there were five Wrong Turn movies. The original 2003 movie, starring Eliza Dushku, was a solid horror film, but I never looked at it as a franchise starter. I guess somebody above my pay grade saw it as the perfect vehicle to launch a direct to video series. I cannot say I am against the idea, but most of them have slipped past me. With that said, Wrong Turn 5: Bloodlines is over the top fun and does not seem to require any previous knowledge of the series.
So far as the series timeline goes, Bloodlines is a sequel to a prequel. Part four took the series back before the original film and this one follows that. Still. I am not sure of here really is a solid connection through the run. What I can say is that the Wrong Turn films are not meant to be taken seriously. Well, the original was a pretty serious affair, but part two’s reality television take, featuring Henry Rollins, and this one have a rather humorous undercurrent.
As Bloodlines opens, we are introduced to a group of college kids heading to a small West Virginia town for the Mountain Man Festival, an event compared to Burning Man. The friends are armed with plenty of drugs and a desire to have fun. The problem is that the town is right next door to a group of inbred cannibals and they are hungry.
As the kids roll into town, they nearly run over a guy standing in the middle of the road, causing to swerve out of the way and run straight into a tree. As it turns out, the man is a diversion. The inbred cannibals are waiting up a neighboring hill to pick them off. Fortunately for our protagonists, the police show up and the whole lot, man in the road included, are arrested.
That certainly doesn’t sound very exciting does it? How about this, once the introductions are out of the way the movie turns into an inbred cannibal version of Assault on Precinct 13 (or Rio Bravo, if you prefer). The main setting is the sheriff’s office, where the man from the road and all around bad guy, Maynard (the deliciously evil Doug Bradley), is being held. While Maynard engages in some Lecter-esque mind games, his inbred cannibal kin are running amuck through the town in an effort to free their boss.
There really is not much to the story. It boils down to some crazy killers trying to free one of their own and killing those who get in their way, in as bloody a fashion as they can. There is no statement to be made about the human condition nor any emotional connection to be had. You only want to watch his if you want to have fun with a b-grade horror.
Audio/Video. The digitally shot feature is presented in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1. The movie is not a pretty one, filled with flat cinematography and plenty of ugly browns. While the movie does not hide its low budget roots all that well, the high definition transfer is actually pretty good with plenty of good detail, especially when there is some gore involved. A couple of noisy sequences pop up during some action and when weird angles are employed, but nothing overly distracting. It is a good transfer of a less than pretty movie.
Audio comes in the form of DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and it does the job. It is a clean and clear front heavy mix with easily heard dialogue and the occasional surround effect, usually some woodland noises and cannibal cackling. Nothing special, but certainly adequate.
- Commentary. The track features director Declan O’Brien and discussion of many abets of the films production. It is lively but no necessary.
- A Day in the Death. A collection of behind the scenes clips.
- Hillbilly Kills. This takes a brief look at the various kills employed.
- Director’s Die-aries. More behind the scenes clips, these shot by the director.
Bottomline. Bad dialogue, mediocre acting, and plenty of blood fill the 90-minute runtime. Of course, the highlight is Doug Bradley chewing up the scenery and having a malevolently good time doing it. It is not a good movie and not one that necessarily needs to be made a part of your collection. Still, it has some good energy and some nice sequences of blood and gore. You could do worse for a bloody diversion.