Wrong Turn (2003)
Main Menu Audio & Animation
Menu Animation & Audio
Audio Commentary-Rob Schmidt (Dir), Eliza Dushku &Desmond Harrington (Actors)
Featurette-Stan Winston 'Monster Mogul'
Featurette-Eliza Dushku 'Babe In The Woods'
Featurette-'Fresh Meat' - The Wounds Of Wrong Turn
Additional Footage-Extended 'Waterfall' Sequence
Outtakes-'Francine Gets Killed' Sequence
|Year Of Production||2003|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL (63:30)||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||2,4||Directed By||Rob Schmidt|
Warner Home Video
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||
English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (224Kb/s)
English Audio Commentary Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.85:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||None||Smoking||Yes, drug smoking to boot.|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||Yes, a coda to the film takes place halfway through.|
Wrong Turn, as with many of the new wave of horror, has shunned the Scream mould (a good thing, as that has now been done to death - pardon the pun), done away with most of the pop-culture references (although the film-makers couldn't resist bringing up Deliverance), and attempted to make a "traditional 70's style horror." The "hero" of the piece is Chris Finn (Desmond Harrington - an actor who is difficult to accept in this role if you have previously seen Ghost Ship), who we meet as he is running late driving through West Virginia back-country trying to make an evening job interview. Unfortunately, the highway is blocked by an accident, so Chris heads back and looks for a way around. On a map at an old service station he sees a road that should take him through to the highway about 15 miles up - and he decides to take it. On the way he takes a (wait for it)...wrong turn! Very quickly he runs into a group of late teens (or early twenty-somethings) by the side of the road whose car has more than one flat tyre. Having established that there is no phone at the service station on the way in, they leave two people with the car, while Chris and the rest of the road-side group, Jessie (Eliza Dushku), Carly (Emmanuelle Chriqui), and Scott (Jeremy Sisto) head off in an attempt to find help. From there it all goes down hill - very quickly they are all running for their lives from hideously disfigured, inbred, back-country cannibals.
Rather than being a true horror film, Wrong Turn is more a horror-influenced action film, and this is what saves it. When it tries for a creepy effect, it largely falls flat, but it is the numerous action set-pieces that are what make this film good fun. Fleeing on foot from an inbred cannibal armed with a bow-and-arrow - it doesn't get much goofier, nor more enjoyable, than that. The actors are also suited to their task, putting in good physical performances, with Emmanuelle Chriqui in particular imbuing her "annoying girl" character with enough heart that we care for her despite her ability to ruin things, and Jeremy Sisto playing the likeable monster bait. Eliza Dushku plays her Faith character from Buffy the Vampire Slayer by another name (she must be getting tired of the "tough chick" roles by now), while Desmond Harrington seems to sleepwalk though his performance (that could have had something to do with breaking an ankle early in production), but it is sufficient.
The down-side of trying to do a "70's style horror" is that there is absolutely nothing new here. Remote locations, kooky country cannibals, and virtually unkillable enemies have all been done before, and in many cases, better. That leaves Wrong Turn without anything to truly distinguish itself, and that is its largest weakness - if you are going to do something that has been done many times before, at least make sure you do it well. The other major problem with this film is that it is not all that scary. The action is fun to get into, but there are almost no real frights at all, and the atmosphere is severely lacking. Wrong Turn will probably only be of interest to fans of the actors involved, or those who enjoy films that are dopey but fun. Most will want to check this out as a rental first.
Presented in the slightly altered aspect ratio of 1.78:1 (the original theatrical ratio was 1.85:1), this transfer is 16x9 enhanced.
Sharpness is very good, displaying enough fine detail. The image could be said to be slightly soft overall, but that would be splitting hairs, and the end result is a nicely smooth appearance that enhances the experience more than hindering it. There is almost no grain at all, with even shots of open sky only showing barley noticeable low-level grain. Shadow detail is superb, with all darker scenes being easily penetrable and presenting plenty of depth. There is no low-level noise present.
Colours are rich and vibrant. The greens of the West Virginia forest are a pleasure to behold, while the highlights of the characters' wardrobe stand out with authority. The all important colour of blood is deep, rich and red, and serves to add to the production.
The most impressive aspect of this transfer is that there are virtually no artefacts to be found. No film artefacts flecking the frame, no aliasing, and no pixelisation. The only area in which this transfer could be called slightly sub-standard is that in places it does seem to be the tiniest bit over-compressed. This can be seen in any fast-moving shot of the forest, where the foreground seems to slide by just a little bit more slowly than the background, leaving barely perceptible motion trails. This could be more due to the fact that I was looking very hard to try to find something wrong with the image, and it certainly is not a highly noticeable problem, but there does seem to be something there.
There are no subtitles on this disc.
This is an RSDL formatted disc with the layer change taking place at 63:30. As it is, it is not too bad although noticeable due to the drop in audio, but it could have been placed only a few minutes earlier where no-one would have seen it, so it is in a small way disappointing.
There are three audio tracks on this disc, the first two being the original English dialogue presented in both Dolby Digital 5.1 (at 448 Kbps) and Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo (at 224Kbps). The third is the English director's commentary track, presented in Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo (at 192 Kbps). The stereo audio track is not flagged as surround encoded, but will provide plenty for those who have Prologic capable equipment if they manually enable surround decoding.
Dialogue is clear and easy to understand at all times. It is never affected by action or other audio effects. There are a couple of occasions where the dialogue recording takes on a "hollow" feel (such as in the cabin at 26:07), but even then the clarity of the dialogue is not affected. Audio sync is spot on throughout the transfer and never causes a problem.
The music is a combination of score work from Elia Cmiral and contemporary choices that come into play largely as "practical" sounds (car radio, etc). The score is a very typical horror score, complete with the "tension" music that starts to play before most of the major fright moments, and for the most part does little to inspire. It does not really hinder the film, but it could have done a whole lot more.
The surround channels are heavily used throughout the film, delivering both ambient effects (rustling trees in the forest and so forth), as well as very specific directional effects. This is one of the most effective surround sound tracks available. Unfortunately, those listening to the 2.0 soundtrack, even with surround enabled, will not find the same level of clarity and precise sound placement. There are still plenty of straight panning effects from left to right for those restricted to stereo or Prologic systems, but the real quality of this soundtrack only comes out in the 5.1 mix.
The subwoofer is often and aggressively used. From the engine rumbles, to explosions, to the score, it is rarely dormant, and often threatens to knock a few walls down.
|Surround Channel Use|
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The video quality is so close to perfect as to be able to reach out and touch it. There are only a few times where it does seem a little over-compressed, but aside from those, there is nothing wrong with it at all.
The audio quality is likewise excellent, providing an extensive work-out for any surround sound system.
The extras are the only truly disappointing aspect of this disc, as most are not particularly interesting, and little insight is provided into the production. Even the commentary is largely a bust.
|DVD||Pioneer DV-555K, using Component output|
|Display||Loewe Xelos 5381ZW. Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Amplification||Onkyo TX-DS787, THX Select|
|Speakers||Rochester Audio Animato Series (2xSAF-02, SAC-02, 3xSAB-01) + 12" Sub (150WRMS)|