Cody’s review published on Letterboxd:
Wrong Turn is a different film than I was expecting it to be.
The original Wrong Turn film was one of my first introductions into horror, so it holds a pretty special place in my heart. It isn’t the best horror film out there, but it’s one that really stands out for me. Having only seen a few of the sequels, I wasn’t too sure what I was in store for this this incarnation of the story.
And in all honesty, I’m pleasantly surprised with this film. It takes the general idea of Wrong Turn and plays with it, ditching a lot of the first film to set itself apart entirely from the rest of the series. It definitely stands out from the rest of the films, but I’m not too sure that is what was best for this film. One big thing that I noticed was that the film does take itself a little more seriously than the first, dropping a bit of the campiness for some serious scenes, which I normally don’t enjoy in a horror reboot, but it actually suited this film well. I’m not too sure how effective it would have been, given the changes, to have camped it up and leaned into a less serious side.
I went in expecting something along the lines of the first film, and was surprised to see something very different, even if the general story was familiar. Once the first kill happened, I was hooked and was excited to see where it would go from there. And after that first kill, it didn’t really go much further. I was expecting a gory horror film, matching, or even surpassing, the effects that were in the first film. The first kill here is shocking and the effects are fantastic, but after that, the film gets quite tame. And there’s nothing wrong with a tame horror film, I was just expecting something a little more grisly than what was given.
The characters in this one are pretty likable, and there was enough set up with each of them to be invested in them, which I can’t say for a majority of the other Wrong Turn films. As the film went along, I found myself disliking the characters more and more, but that’s just me not being able to connect with them personally. It really was nice to see a horror film branch out and be more inclusive in casting, which is a nice change to see.
While the story for the film drifts away from the original film, it was still a very fresh and different take, which made for an enjoyable watch. I wasn’t too sure where the film was going to go once I started to understand it, so it was a lot of fun to figure out where the story was going to go. And even if the story does end up being pretty predictable in the end, it’s still a fun time overall.
You shouldn’t go into this film thinking that it is going to be anything remotely similar to the first film, since it’s very different and very much on its own. I do still prefer the first film, but I know that given time, this one is going to grow on me a lot. It was nice to be able to get out and see this in a theater, since I saw that it is up for purchase next month for physical copies, so it really felt like an intimate experience to see this film in a theater. Wrong Turn is a fun horror film that manages to stand its ground and set itself apart from the original film.