When Jennifer and her friends go on a soul-searching journey into the mountains, things take a sinister turn when they stray from the beaten path and into the realm of mountain-dwelling savages, going by the name of “The Founders”. Wrong turn 2021 is a surprisingly enjoyable medley of blood, gore, and clichés.
Wrong Turn is a Cookie-Cutter Horror Movie with Bite
In the early parts of the movie, Wrong Turn throws out clichés with no shame or mercy. From the plot to the characters, it shows us what we have already seen hundreds of times before. However, this is soon redeemed with an onslaught of death and gore, opening the drooping eyelids of the viewer and letting us know the movie has kicked it up a gear.
The characters that make wrong turn are a motley crew of platitudes. From the token black guy to the mandatory gay couple, the writers really went out of their ways to tick all of the boxes of a tired horror concept. This is only magnified by the “group-of-kids-lost-in-the-wilderness-hunted-by-crazed-killers” angle and very little in terms of fresh ideas are seen throughout.
…This Doesn’t Mean that Wrong Turn is a bad Movie
Despite the almost laughable premise, Wrong Turn actually turns into a surprisingly fun horror/slasher. The Founders are fans of their traps and our doomed group seem all too happy to test them out. While this goes to make the movie feel a little forced as huge red flags are ignored in favour of treating the viewer to the gory demise of another of the six hapless heroes. While the writing leaves very little to the imagination, the sudden triggering of some of the traps leaves you on the edge of your seat waiting for the next one to be triggered and guessing at who is next. I guessed correctly the order the victims fall prey to the mountain monsters; putting into contrast the shear predictability of Wrong Turn. However, this doesn’t mean that the 8th instalment is without a few shock moments.
A Determined Father (and a Little Spoiler)
Running nicely alongside the core plot, Wrong Turn follows in the footsteps of a determined father of one of the group hell bent on finding his missing daughter. His quest for answers eventually finds him reunited with his daughter but is it all too little, too late? The side-line story helps to break up the monotony of mountain-side madness and I naturally found myself really hoping for his success. In a Liam Neeson drive to find his girl and bring her to safety, Matthew Modine (Full Metal Jacket and The Dark Knight Rises) perfectly portrays a desperate dad with nothing to lose and a daughter to save.
When the cliché counter went off the scale and started throwing springs and plumes of smoke, I really thought I was in for 110 minutes of stale, boring viewing. However, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I came to enjoy the movie. The mountain scenes were perfectly broken up with the father’s quest to find his daughter, turning Wrong Turn into a double-edged dagger.
The untimely endings of the wandering group keep you in bloody moments and allow for tentative viewing, while Scott’s mission to find his daughter offers some real backbone to the story. Furthermore, just when you start to think you have it all down, an unexpected twist jumps up and bites you on your assumptive ass. Overall, I wouldn’t say that Wrong Turn is a great movie, I wouldn’t, however, go as far as to say it’s wholly terrible. With a few surprises and a lot of blood, Wrong Turn is definitely worth a watch.