I'm a freelance writer living in Perth, Western Australia.
Published August 1st 2012
The best Jaws parody to date
Joe Dante's 1978 Piranha is just what you'd want in a B-grade killer animal movie, which has been hailed as the best of parody of Steven Spielberg's 1975 Jaws and inspired a series of similarly themed B movies.
Piranha has been hailed a cult classic with its hilarious and horrific scenes of blood stained water and fake and funny sounding fish with jaws of death. It was followed up with a 80's made sequel and has so far had two remakes; the first in 1995 and the second in 2010, which even spawned its own sequel in 2012.
Piranha starts with two teens swimming in a private reservoir. They are attacked by an unseen force and sink beneath the water, never to be seen again. Maggie, a rather absent-minded insurance investigator is sent to find the teens, only to find a mad scientist, a crazy drunk, a summer swimming festival and hordes of hungry, genetically modified flesh-eating piranha, which can survive in both fresh and salt water.
This film, is also famously known for its unofficial drinking game, in which the audience takes a sip of their drink, whenever they notice a reference to another "death from the deep" film - the most obvious ones being when the character of Maggie is playing a Jaws video game and when one of the ladies on the beach is seen reading "Moby Dick" as the swimmers are being attacked. It also has some of the most memorable lines, the best being when the heroes are being held by the military and Maggie distracts the guard by saying "Look up in the sky! It's Superman!" before flashing her breasts.
Piranha is rated M and is recommended for mature audiences as it contains medium level violence and nudity and was released on VHS in 1985 and DVD in 2004.