Wrong Turn 3: Left for Dead opens with a group of campers being killed in gory fashion by the surviving Three Finger from the previous movie. It’s a fun & violent opening that doesn’t really have much bearing on the rest of the film. It’s just a re-introduction to the surviving cannibal hillbillies of the West Virginia woods.
Killing off the ‘horror-cliché’ teens at the very start bodes well for the rest of Wrong Turn 3 as it has a really difficult task bettering the second movie. You can read our review of that here as well as our review of the first movie in the franchise here.
A few days later, a big prison transfer is taking place. Crawford (Jake Curran), a car thief; Floyd (Gil Kolirin), a neo-Nazi serial killer; Brandon (Tom McKay), who was wrongly convicted of murder & Chavez (Tamer Hassan), the leader of a crime organisation. Leading up to this transfer Chavez was planning his escape, something the correctional officers are aware of. Knowing this they arranged a short-notice transfer & have sent in an undercover agent to get information from Chavez.
The only one who knows the real identity of the undercover agent is officer Nate Wilson (Tom Frederic) who is part of the group of cops on the transfer bus.
While arguing about their crimes on the bus they are rammed by Three Finger’s truck. He forces them off the road where they crash in the woods. During the chaos Chavez & the rest of the cons see this as a chance to take over. They grab the guns & hold the officers’ hostage.
The group are forced to travel through the woods on foot. They quickly come under attack from Three Toes, the son of Three Finger. Unfortunately, for Three Toes he’s dealing with psychotic killers on his own level & they get the upper hand. They kill the deformed monster & leave his head on a stake as a warning to Three Fingers.
It doesn’t work…
It’s good to see Wrong Turn 3: Left for Dead continuing the trend of using different groups of fodder for the deformed hillbillies to kill. First, we had college kids, then we had reality TV contestants & now we have convicts & cops. It does make for a pretty interesting watch as the internal threat often over-rides the external threat. In fact, for large parts of the movie, the cannibal killers don’t really get a look-in. They’re not needed as the cons seem happy to try & kill each other!
As characters they’re pretty one-dimensional, we’ve seen them all before. The Neo-Nazi, the sleazy thief, the good-guy cop…it’s hardly exciting stuff even if the acting is solid. No complaints here, everyone does a good job.
Visually the movie goes for a more realistic gory look, a lot of violence is dished out with fists & it can be quite nasty looking. However, it’s not much fun. The gritty convict stories don’t sit that comfortably alongside the silliness of a cannibal family hunting people in the West Virginia Woods.
Whereas Wrong Turn 2 took what made the first film & upped it in every area, Wrong Turn 3 doesn’t manage that same progression. It’s a perfectly solid slasher flick with occasional flashes that excite. However it’s nowhere as memorable or fun as what came before.
Wrong Turn 3 - Left For Dead