Ok, so there is an interesting situation regarding this DVD. See, when this movie debuted on Syfy years ago, I was all excited because it was another Roger Corman movie for me to enjoy. After watching it, I eagerly awaited for it to appear on DVD but, to my great despair, it was never released on DVD…or at least not in the US. I have seen several copies online in other regions but since I don’t have an all-region Blu-Ray/DVD player, none of those would do me any good. However, I would still go online and try to find a copy that was playable in the US and one day, I managed to find one….sort of. What I wound up getting was a set of promotional disks for all of the movies that debuted on Syfy that month, including Arachnoquake and Jersey Shore Shark Attack. Well the three other movies in the set were all finished products but today’s movie was not, which I admit makes for some interesting, and often entertaining viewing. So let’s get right on with today’s movie, Piranhaconda.
The plot: Professor Robert Lovegrove and his two assistants take a helicopter to a remote part of the Hawaiian islands to search for a legendary creature. Reaching a waterfall, they find some eggs and Lovegrove grabs one and places it inside a plastic container. Suddenly, a piranhaconda bursts out of the water and kills the two assistants, while a second one attacks the helicopter and causes it to crash, leaving Lovegrove stranded there. On the other side of the island, a film crew is filming the latest installment of a horror movie when the director decides to stop for the day. As they pack everything up, one of the crew goes off on her own to look for a missing light meter and ends up getting attacked and killed by the piranhaconda. At the hotel, Rose (the scriptwriter) and Jack (stuntman/killer) are talking and Rose is showing him an article online about how a legendary Polynesian creature was spotted on the island last week but they are soon interrupted by Kimmy Weston, the movie’s female lead, who convinces Jack to put some suntan lotion on her back. When a man, Rick, sitting next to them recognizes Kimmy and asks his girlfriend Jamie to take a picture of him with her, Kimmy tries to get Jack in the shot with her but he leaves and goes back to the table with Rose, only to have her leave as soon as he gets there. Elsewhere, Lovegrove makes his way towards an abandoned sugar factory and tries to see if there are any keys in the vehicles there when he is taken captive by a woman named Talia. Talia takes him to her boss Pike who, despite Lovegrove’s warnings about the monster in the jungle, decides to hold him for ransom and keeps him in the factory. Meanwhile, Dr. Masters, her assistant Vicki, and their guide Leilani are looking for a rare flower and find it only to be killed by a piranhaconda. At the film location, the director Milo calls a cut to the first scene and asks the girl with Kimmy to practice screaming while he takes a call so the girl wanders off and ends up getting eaten. When Milo gets off the phone, he informs everyone that the film has been shut down so they all pack up to leave. On the way back to the hotel, Jack, Kimmy, Milo, Rose, and Gunner (the film’s explosive’s man) are taken hostage by some of Pike’s men but Gunner uses some mini explosions to create a distraction which allows him and Jack to escape. The lead kidnapper, Arturo, sends two men after them but one of them is killed by a piranhaconda and the other returns holding the camera dropped by Lovegrove’s assistant when she was killed. The lead kidnapper watches the camera’s footage and decides to take the three prisoners to the sugar factory. Meanwhile, Rick and Jamie decide to go hiking to a remote beach but after they go for a swim in the ocean, Rick goes off to use the restroom and ends up being killed by a piranhaconda. Back at the kidnapping site, Jack and Gunner meet back up and decide to go after Rose and the others so Gunner grabs some supplies from the back of their van. At the factory, Arturo shows Pike and Talia the video camera and after seeing the footage, Pike decides to try and sell the egg that Lovegrove had in order to make some more money, though Arturo and Talia seem uneasy about it. Meanwhile, Lovegrove is explaining to Rose and the others about what he was doing there when Arturo has Rose, Kimmy, and Milo go outside. The three are taken to a field, where a masked Pike films them while giving his ransom demands, then they are taken back to the factory but Rose pretends to seduce Arturo then knees him in the crotch and escapes. One of the kidnappers chases after her and catches up to her after she trips and falls into a nest of piranhaconda eggs but he is killed by a piranhaconda. Rose runs back to the factory and tries to warn the kidnappers and they take her back to the room with the others. Jack and Gunner arrive and see Rose being taken inside so they make a plan to get them out. After taking out a guard and grabbing his gun, Jack goes to get the others while Gunner plants some explosives around the area. After freeing the prisoners, Jack leads them towards the van and Milo, who had been shot in the foot earlier, chooses to stay behind to help cover their escape as he won’t be able to make it to the van. Jack, Rose, Kimmy, and Lovegrove head to the van, with Pike and the kidnappers shooting at them when a piranhaconda appears and kills Talia. Gunner sets off the explosives but ends up getting hit by a stray bullet so Jack is forced to leave the body. As they drive off with the piranhaconda in pursuit, Lovegrove notices his satchel in the back of the van and quickly grabs it. When the piranhaconda appears on the road ahead of them, Jack stops and then notices Pike had shown up and fired a bazooka at them so he quickly speeds towards the piranhaconda then swerves so that the rocket hits the creature instead. As they drive off, Pike watches as a second piranhaconda nudges the wounded one before killing it. Pike returns to his men and they head off after Jack and the others. Meanwhile, Milo manages to wander through the jungle and reaches the beach where Jamie is waiting for Rick to return. When Milo tells Jamie about what is going on, she thinks he is crazy and goes running off yelling for Rick, with Milo chasing after her. When Jamie reaches the nest of eggs, Milo tries to warn her that they should leave but she decides to break the eggs instead, attracting a piranhaconda to them which quickly kills Milo then Jamie. Jack and the others run out of gas and decide to make their way down river in hopes that there is a boat nearby. When they reach a dock and see a boat, they start to get inside but Rose finds the egg in Lovegrove’s satchel and they realize that the egg is what attracted the piranhaconda to them. Since the studio vans are nearby, Jack decides to use the egg as bait to kill the piranhaconda and heads back there to get some explosives. As Jack and Rose are working on rigging up the bomb, Jack is shot by Pike, who plans on killing them all. When a piranhaconda appears and starts killing Pike and his men, Lovegrove uses the opportunity to grab the egg and run while Kimmy goes to get the detonators but she ends up being killed by the piranhaconda. Jack tells Rose to head back to the dock and get help while he deals with the piranhaconda, planning to use a gun he grabbed from a dead worker to set off the explosives. Rose sees Lovegrove getting on the boat and jumps on with him and they leave. When the piranhaconda chases after them, Rose discovers the egg and Lovegrove quickly grabs it back from her. She manages to knock him overboard, where he is killed by the piranhaconda, then beaches the boat and runs through the jungle with the egg, eventually catching up to Jack. The two ride off on Pike’s ATV and head back to the waterfall, where they are cornered by the piranhaconda. Jack places the bomb in the container with the egg and throws it at the piranhaconda, then he grabs Rose and they jump into the water just before they detonate it, killing the creature. Jack and Rose embrace each other and kiss due to surviving but are quickly killed by a third piranhaconda.
As is common with any Roger Corman/Jim Wynorski movie, I found this movie very entertaining. The acting was pretty decent in several aspects, primarily Michael Madsen (Lovegrove) and Rib Hillis (Jack), and pretty corny in others but that is to be expected. The story was decent as far as the main plot goes but there where the random plotlines that didn’t really seem to make much sense but just seemed to be filler, such as the Dr. Masters looking for the flowers. The special effects were pretty decent and I liked the simplistic design of the creature, with just the facial area showing the melding of the two animals and it really worked. Now I have to admit, watching the DVD that I have, where you see words appear on the screen to denote the special effects that will be inserted (such as “blood mist” or “chunks of meat fall to ground”) or seeing a woman’s leg painted green to show where the editing will make it look like it was bitten off was pretty entertaining, but I honestly would really like to have a normal copy. Still, if this comes on TV it is worth watching for some cheesy sci-fi fun.
Rating: 3 out of 5