Wrong Turn (Horror) (2021)
Director: Mike P. Nelson
Writer: Alan B. McElroy
Stars: Charlotte Vega, Emma Dumont, Matthew Modine, Daisy Head
As a small group of friends try hiking the Appalachian Trail, they run into trouble as soon as they stray from the path. Setting of a series of traps and attracting more danger then they had bargained for.
Certainly not without the most predictable set-up in horror cinema’s history, ''Wrong Turn'' is a reboot of a series created by writer Alan B. McElroy. As the seventh film in the series, it adjusts some story elements that were previously established. It is worth noting is that I wasn’t aware of and haven’t watched any of the previous films.
Before following the group of teens, ''Wrong Turn'' opens with a worried father (Matthew Modine) searching some backwater town for any traces of his daughter Jen (Charlotte Vega). The townsfolk are an unfriendly bunch trying to get him to leave as soon as possible. Following this prologue, it transfers to the teenagers who witness pretty much the same thing, but rambunctious teens as they are, they go against every advice given by these same people and go on their hike.
Using an interesting and eerie design for the twisted conservative group later established as The Foundation. ''Wrong Turn'' is somewhat promising despite the awfully typical approach in its plot and never really nailing that fear factor. As the friends run into the initial traps, the gory side is also shown. It turns out gruesome enough without being too extreme, likely accessible to most viewers, even those who aren’t all too fond of the body horror themes in films like Saw, Hostel and Cabin Fever. The effects used regrettably don’t seem to have much impact on the characters. However, despite some initial reaction, eventually, moods start changing as they’re confronted with more torment, but the group seems mostly apathetic to what happens around them.
Relative unknowns are cast as the main characters, some young actors not having done much of anything noteworthy. Apart from those, there are some established actors like Matthew Modine and Bill Sage. While none of the performances are specifically memorable, they work well enough to convey the standard horror movie tropes.
In a segment later in the film, there is a twist I could personally really appreciate despite the likelihood of it being done in many horror films before the 2021 reboot of ''Wrong Turn'', and sadly it didn’t amount to much as those flourishes of creativity in storytelling were quickly trampled by an abundance of oversights and unexplainable decisions.
Must’ve taken a wrong turn when I decided to watch this film.