Glenville Sanitorium, 1974, home to three of the most despicable hillbilly cannibals you’re ever likely to meet: 3-Finger, Saw-Tooth and One-Eye. Rather than chowing down on some nice beef steak, they think it’s better to chow down on live flesh. Which is all well and good for them, but very unfortunate for their victims.
Life isn’t good for the three boys though, as they’re locked up and treated to a nice dose of electric shock therapy rather than days out at the zoo. The unfortunate boys want freedom from their cells and they chance upon this when a visitor stupidly allows herself within touching distance. Grabbing her hair, they retrieve a hair clip, which they later use to unlock their door and to cause havoc. To say that they seek revenge is a big understatement.
We’re then transported forward, nearly 30 years later (2003), which just happens to be shortly before our first movie in the Wrong Turn franchise. A group of friends on a trip to Aspen, take a ‘wrong turn’ and wind up at our friendly Glenville Sanitorium. As they’re lost and stuck in what soon becomes a snowstorm, they foolishly believe that their best best is to hole up in the building until the morning, then to head off once the sun has come back up.
Wrong, wrong, wrong! When are you naive kids ever going to learn that you never stay in an abandoned building? Have none of you ever read the horror rule book before? Obviously not. Although, if you did we would have ended up with one boring movie I guess.
In 2003 the three brothers are no longer patients but are the only residents in the sanitorium with a hunger for flesh and a rip roaring good time. They’re not going to let some meddling kids get in their way and hell, it’s a free lunch! Will the group of friends live to tell the tale, or will they all be items on our hillbillies menu?
I can honestly say that out of all four Wrong Turn films, this is the best of the bunch. We’re not witnessing oscar winning performances from our young cast, but we are witnessing what I can only describe as quite possibly some of the best gross out deaths I’ve seen in a very long time.
The beginning of the film alone has possibly the most grotesque scenes I’ve seen for many years. If you like your horror to have body dismemberment, flesh being ripped off bodies and limbs being cut off and eaten, then you my friend, have come to the right place.
Let’s talk about effects:
There are copious amounts of blood, which for once are not all CGI – hooray I hear you cry! Yes, finally Wrong Turn has learned from the mistake of using CGI in Wrong Turn 3 to show blood. No one believed it was real blood and thankfully now we’re now treated to showers of blood throughout the fourth installment. 3-Finger, Saw-Tooth and One-Eye also look pretty realistic in their prosthetics, which is a nice change to the pitiful images we get in other films of this style.
Glenville Sanitorium is a spendid setting and the addition of snow only makes the scene look more macabre. Inside the sanitorium our actors are allowed to run all over the place and discover the true horrors that await them. Every part of the building brings a new experience, not only to the cast but to the viewer watching, and it’s refreshing how the use of dark and light helps set each scene.
Should you buy the DVD/Blu Ray?
Director Declan O’Brien has upped the ante since Wrong Turn 3, and has revitalised what could easily have become a tired brand. The DVD also includes commentary from Declan and behind the scenes producer Brett Levison, which will be interesting for die hard fans of the series. There are also 3 featurettes which vary in quality, but will be welcomed by those looking for a further insight to the production of the film.
The only down side to the film is that it just wasn’t long enough. I just didn’t want it to end!
I would highly recommend this to first time viewers of horror and those who like their horror actors sliced, diced and on ice!