WRONG TURN (2021) Reviews and overview

 

‘This land is their land’

Wrong Turn is a 2021 American backwoods horror feature film directed by Mike P. Nelson (The Domestics) from a screenplay written by franchise creator Alan McElroy (Spawn; Halloween 4The Vampire DiariesThe Night Shift) with Robert Kulzer producing.

Plot:

A group of unlucky friends travel to Harpers Ferry, West Virginia to spend a couple of days hiking the Appalachian Trail. They are confronted by “The Foundation”, a community of people who have lived in the mountains since before the Civil War. The Foundation doesn’t like strangers…

Reviews [click links to read more]:

“The gore-starved set—you know who you are—can feel robbed, as the attitude of the kills is deadly serious and not in the name of fun, although the aftermath of a rolling log destroying one of the hikers is plenty gnarly, as is the brutal crushing of a guilty party […] It might not be the movie we thought we were getting, but not even a different turn is enough to justify this reboot’s existence.” The Artful Critic

“The action is good. It is a little bit uneven, but there’s a lot of exciting moments. The runtime is also a bit too long, but I’m still cool with it […] Also, the gore and blood looked practical to me. If there’s any CGI, I sure didn’t see it. We have some very gruesome kills in Wrong Turn. The type of kills you can’t decide if you want to keep on looking or turn away in fright. The finale is balls up too.” Bulletproof Action

“Maybe you’ll like this new direction and love the innovation. I just miss the “good ol’ days” where inbred creatures in the style of The Hills Have Eyes were part of the story. Ultimately, I would recommend watching this movie for Charlotte Vega, who has the absolute lead role. Her character arc is absolutely abysmal and she is forced to speak and act in ways that are so cringey.” Heaven of Horror

“The ending is certainly unexpected. Mike P. Nelson delivered on Wrong Turn (2021). It is a great film. It’s a fun movie, it has that terrifying fun aspect. The cast does an excellent job. I would recommend watching Wrong Turn (2021) and safe travels.” HNN

” …this reboot actually defines the word. It doesn’t rely too heavily on repeating anything the previous films have done. Instead, we’re giving something that sits in a sub-category all by itself. Nelson takes long strides to make sure we’re not constantly rolling our eyes and does a solid job at nodding to his influences instead of ripping them off. ” The Movie Sleuth

” …adds a human element to standard B-movie carnage. Nelson also grabs inspiration from films like “Deliverance,” “The Hunger Games,” and “The Village” to hone his vision, with clear nods utilized to create an expansive world. It doesn’t always work and folks will surely locate a plothole or several, but there’s no denying this franchise just took a major step in the right direction.” The Only Critic

” …Wrong Turn will initially frustrate many fright fiends cruising the horror highway for a guaranteed hallmark of habitual gratification. However, stick with it to journeys end and you will be rewarded with a rock-solid and conceptually bright midnight movie that has the guts to challenge its own preconceptions.” The People’s Movies

“Thematic concerns aside, Nelson does serve up moments of visual bravado, particularly the impressive long-take final shot, and there are a few impactful head-busting makeup effects by Ryan Schaddelee […] The new direction Nelson and McElroy have taken with this reimagining isn’t a wrong turn, exactly, yet there are too many narrative bumps and holes on the road to its destination.” Rue Morgue

“A twist eventually surfaces within the villains, but this still serves no greater purpose than killing people for rather dumb reasons. Improves as it goes, but drags its feet for so long the ultimate turns become easy to predict.” Splatter Critic

“Do not be distracted by that title. Simply called The Foundation or frankly anything other than Wrong Turn, this film would garner and rightly deserve greater attention. This is a good horror film, a worthy Friday night fright, and a considerable improvement on what’s gone before.” Starburst

“The script’s beauty is how McElroy delivers on franchise expectations while also exploring new ideas about communities that prey on the universal desire to belong […] It’s about what we do to one another for one another, both good and bad, and it revels in the chaos that ensues when people with conflicting ideas of decency collide.” Substream Magazine

“With this, Nelson has taken the series into a welcome detour, in a thriller in which the supposed hunted are no less barbaric than the hunters and the supposed hunters no less priggish than their game. That isn’t to say that Wrong Turn is a perfect course-correction. The first half is a tad too messy to repel less forgiving fans, much less those counting on an appearance from the series’ star cannibalistic inbreds.” Unreel

“The differences between Wrong Turn of olde and this reboot are stark, from being thirty whole minutes longer, there are no mutant inbred cannibals […] and this steps as far as it can from being a backwoods slasher film, rejigging the entire franchise concept. Rustic traps do continue to feature for fans of inventive squishings and there are some spine-tingling scenes involving the disguises used by the forest dwellers.” Vegan Voorhees

“Die-hard fans of the original set of films may not take to this as much but if you go in with an open mind I’m sure you’d find this an enjoyable viewing experience. When it’s good, it’s great and it did leave me wanting more.” We Have a Hulk

Scroll down for YouTube review(s)

Release:

In the US, Saban Films picked up the distribution rights for a 2021 release. The film premiered theatrically for one night only on January 26, 2021. Tickets for the premiere event will be available at Fathom Events and at box offices from January 8th. Wrong Turn is rated “R” for “Strong bloody violence, grisly images and pervasive language.”

Lionsgate will release Wrong Turn on Blu-ray + Digital on February 23rd 2021. Special features:

Deleted and Extended Scenes
Monsters Among Us: Making Wrong Turn Featurette
Wrong Turn Promotional Trailer
Feature-Length Audio Commentary with Director Mike P. Nelson

In the UK, Signature Entertainment is releasing Wrong Turn on Digital platforms on 26th February 2021.

Production:

Previously, director Mike P. Nelson posted an image (below) and message on Instagram: “The last three months have been absolutely insane. I can’t wait to show you all what we have been creating. Movie #2 blessed me yet again with such an amazing crew and a cast that carried the weight of this beast. Long nights in the woods, mouldy caverns, moss-covered boulders, and skulls was our world for the hasty and dense 26-day shoot. This project was also special as it reunited me with my good friend, DP and collaborator @njunkersfeld [Nick Junkersfeld]. Over the last ten years, Nick and I have been creating madness in Minnesota and I cannot wait to show you the madness we have created in Ohio with this one. Now onto the edit!”

Back in October 2019, we first posted that Constantin Film (makers of the Resident Evil movies) was rebooting the West Virginia cannibalistic in-bred franchise that began in 2003 and spawned another five entries.

Deadline previously reported that the reboot is “a timely and topical meditation on society and its issues. A cross-country hiking expedition puts a group of friends in the land of an inclusive society, where they soon discover they are under a different rule of law, and may not be the victims they thought they were.”

Producer Robert Kulzer commented: “Alan’s re-interpretation of his own work and Mike’s vision are a frightening reflection of our world today: one person’s American dream is another’s worst nightmare.”

Cast and characters:

Matthew Modine … Scott
Emma Dumont … Milla D’Angelo
Charlotte Vega … Jes Shaw
Damian Maffei … Morgan / Deer Skull
Bill Sage … Venable / Ram Skull
Valerie Jane Parker … Corrine
Chaney Morrow … Hobbs
David Hutchison … Cullen / Wild Boar Skull
Dylan McTee … Adam Lucas
Adrian Favela … Luis Ortiz
Adain Bradley … Darius Clemons
Jeremy Ambler … Cave Person
Cory Scott Allen … Ed Jenkins
Gary Ray Stearns … Lloyd Pettigrew
Rhyan Elizabeth Hanavan … Ruthie

Technical details:

109 minutes

Original title:

Wrong Turn: The Foundation

UK trailer:

US trailer:

Clips:

YouTube reviews:

MOVIES and MANIA comment and rating:

This is a different kind of Wrong Turn from the original, one in which two different communities and cultures come into conflict. Those expecting inbred cannibals will be disappointed, however, this Wrong Turn ultimately offers more food for thought despite a few plot point hiccups along the way and a slightly overlong running time.