The private investigator Maggie McNamara from Lyon Investigation is hired by the wealthy J.R. Randolph to find his niece that has disappeared with her boyfriend. Maggie seeks out the lonely...
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A scuba diving instructor, her biochemist boyfriend, and her police chief ex-husband try to link a series of bizarre deaths to a mutant strain of piranha fish whose lair is a sunken freighter ship off a Caribbean island resort.
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Michael V. Gazzo
A psychotic redneck, who owns a dilapidated hotel in rural East Texas, kills various people who upset him or his business, and he feeds their bodies to a large crocodile that he keeps as a pet in the swamp beside his hotel.
Traumatized by her mother's death, young Susan is becoming possessed by the same demon that possessed her mother before she died. More and more her husband and psychiatrist are noticing the... See full summary »
Two generations of men find themselves haunted by the presence of a spectral woman. When the son of one of the elderly men returns to his hometown after his brother's mysterious death, they attempt to unravel her story.
The private investigator Maggie McNamara from Lyon Investigation is hired by the wealthy J.R. Randolph to find his niece that has disappeared with her boyfriend. Maggie seeks out the lonely environmentalist Paul Grogan to help her to look for the teenager. They head to an abandoned army facility and Maggie decides to drain the pools to see whether the body of the girl is there. They are assaulted by a woman with a crowbar but they subdue her. However she escapes and soon they learn that the woman is Dr. Leticia Baines, who is researching a hybrid species of piranha that is capable to survive in fresh and sea waters for military purpose. Further, Maggie has release the piranhas on the river and they are heading to the Lost River Lake Resort. Maggie and Paul inform the corrupt local Sheriff but Randolph tells him to lock them up since he does not want to jeopardize the party he has promoted to his resort.Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
More serious, but all-around inferior, imitation of the 1978 original
RELEASED IN 1995 and directed by Scott P. Levy, "Piranha" chronicles events when genetically-enhanced piranha are accidently released into a river system in the wilderness north of Los Angeles, which threaten kids & counselors at a Summer Camp and vacationers at a lake resort. A private investigator (Alexandra Paul) and a lonely environmentalist (William Katt) team-up to save the swimmers.
This is virtually a scene-by-scene recreation of the 1978 film, taking place in Southern Cal rather than the heart of Texas. While "Piranha" (both versions) is sort of a "Jaws" (1975) knockoff, it's different enough to not be a rip-off: The story takes place in a river system deep in the mainland and not the ocean; the 'monster' consists of teams of little vicious fish rather than a huge great white shark; the beach sequences involve quaint campground-like beaches rather than major ocean beaches; unlike "Jaws," there's a focus on alluring young women, although "Jaws 2" (1978) delivered the goods in this area as well; and there's more of a sense of adventure and arguably suspense. The tone of the original version of "Piranha" mixed-in amusing elements with the horrific mayhem, but this version shoots for a more austere air.
As my title blurb points out, this 1995 version is all-around inferior to the 1978 rendition, even though it's basically the same exact story and both were produced by Roger Corman. Some of the changes, aside from cast and locations, include: A woman (Darleen Carr) is substituted for the scientist (Kevin McCarthy) at the research facility; the stop-motion mini-dinosaur featured in the first act is omitted; there's a new wannabe director character; one of the two babes at the camp dies prematurely; and the filmmakers were more conscious of including racial diversity in the background.
The new locations with sparser foliage are also inferior, as are the women. Although voluptuous Lorissa McComas as Barbara in the prologue is just as good as (or better than) Janie Squire in the original, Soleil Moon Frye and Kehli O'Byrne are rather second rate compared to cutie Melody Thomas Scott and curvy Belinda Balaski, although Kehli is certainly a striking woman.
I suggest skipping this one and viewing the original instead, unless you're a fan of some of the cast members or want to compare the two versions. The 1978 film is superior on practically every level.
THE MOVIE RUNS 89 minutes and was shot, in part, at Castaic Lake just north of Valencia/Santa Clarita, California.
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