June 15, 2014

Filthy Sequel Reviews - 'Joy Ride 3: Roadkill, 300: Rise of an Empire and Wolf Creek 2'

It’s sequels all the way, this weekend, with varying degrees of quality and maybe, more importantly, pure entertainment value. You could argue that none of them are necessary, although that could be said of most sequels, yet I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t looking forward to at least two of those covered below.

Joy Ride 3: Roadkill Unrated (2014)

Review by Jude Felton

Believe it or not, the first Joy Ride flick, which starred the late Paul Walker, was made way back in 2001. This begs the question as to why the sequels, with part 2 being released back in 2008, have been spread out over such a long period of time. I can’t imagine there was a public demand for them, otherwise we’d have had them sooner, or whether there was such a need for the story to be continued.

Anyway, Roadkill is directed by the current needless sequel go to man, Declan O’Brien, who also brought us the last three Wrong Turn movies, which were also released by Fox. Must be a nice steady paycheck for him, as I don’t think he’s really exercising his artistic chops.

This time around, Rusty Nail (play by former Jason Voorhees, Ken Kirzinger), the irate and homicidal truck driver, has his eyes set on a group of obnoxious kids who are on their way across the border to attend a race meet. Quite frankly, they deserve what they get.

Roadkill is not a terrible film, and it does start off well with a particularly gruesome death scene. However, aside from Kirzinger, it’s a film that doesn’t really do much or go anywhere. It quickly runs out of steam, is thoroughly predictable and as such my attention began to wander, long before it had hit the hour mark.

300: Rise of an Empire (2014)

Review by Jude Felton

CGI in some films, especially if executed poorly, is nothing more than a distraction. With 300: Rise of an Empire, this is not an issue; the entire damn film is pretty much CGI. The difference being is that in this film it works, very well.

In terms of plot it’s pretty much a case of Greeks against Persians, with Themistocles (Sullivan Stapleton) going head to head, and other parts too, with the delectable and thoroughly evil, Artemisia (Eva Green). This is a film where the story, which is based on the work of Frank Miller, and co-written by director of the first 300, Zack Snyder, is secondary to the action and carnage on screen.

Entertainment is the order of the day here, with blood and guts flying off the screen at a furious rate. Wonderful, and very impressive, visuals bombard the viewer from start to finish, as you will find yourself swept away in this mindlessly entertaining pseudo-historical slice of hokum.

Violent, bloody and sexy, this is a big budget sequel done right. Entertaining from start to finish.

Wolf Creek 2 (2013)

Review by Jude Felton

Back when Wolf Creek was released in 2005, I was one of very few people in the theater watching it. A lot of folk didn’t like it, because it took too long to get to the “action”, but I thought it was a cracking yarn. With the sequel there is no messing about, and the film gets straight to the blood and guts.

This time around the action is far more focused on crazy pig killer, Mick Taylor (John Jarrett), as he hacks and slashes his way across Australia. Wolf Creek is not big on the build-up, or tension, instead it is all about blood, guts and Taylors wicked dialogue; most of which he vents his anti-English sentiments, which I personally thought was hilarious.

This is a nasty and very violent movie; one which borrows certain elements from other horror flicks, and one that I am sure will spawn at least one more movie. Is it perfect? No. It’s far too disjointed, especially towards the beginning, where it has two plotlines to deal with before it gets to the plot proper.

That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed it, and Mick Taylor is definitely one of my favorite recent horror “icons”.  Jarrett certainly seems to have fun with his homicidal character, and I am sure there are others out there that will have fun with it too.

Joy Ride 3: Roadkill is released by 20th Century Fox on June 17th. 300: Rise of an Empire is released by Warner Brothers on June 24th and Wolf Creek 2 is released on June 24th by Image Entertainment.

No comments: