Thursday, February 14, 2013

TURISTAS (2006) movie review

Turistas (2006) d. Stockwell, John (USA)

Billed by pundits as “Hostel: South American Style,” this yawn-worthy would-be slaughterfest starts off promisingly enough with a wingding of a bus crash that strands a multinational crew of tourists in the middle of Brazil. Walking down to the seashore, they discover a local cantina where the water is warm, the beer is cold and the tanned rippling flesh is everywhere.

However, a few drugged drinks later, they wake up to find themselves robbed of their belongings and several of their party missing. When a friendly native offers to help out, they find themselves taken further into the jungles, eventually winding up as unwilling candidates for a black market organ-harvesting ring.

While Michael Ross’ slim plot has potential, Blue Crush director John Stockwell regrettably has no idea how to generate or maintain tension, as evidenced by his frequent excursions into underwater sightseeing. Stockwell does make the best of the exotic Brazilian landscape, but the thoroughly obnoxious characters grate unbearably on viewers’ nerves and by the time they start getting bumped off, the only feeling is one of “get on with it, then.” As our dull leads, Melissa George gets the opportunity to show off her native Australian accent and her bikini-bod, while generic hero-type Josh Duhamel scowls and flexes for all he’s worth. Hardly worth the trip.

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