Directed by Declan O’Brien
Distributed by Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment
Buckle up. It’s time for more vehicular slaughter with the gear grinding, truck driving serial slayer Rusty Nail in Joy Ride 3: Road Kill. While the third installment is more like a standalone old school torture horror flick than the others, there are nods to previous installments – particularly the first, which was alternately titled Roadkill and starred Paul Walker. That’s because Joy Ride 3 feels a bit like a hybrid of Road Games and The Fast and the Furious (incidentally, the latter film and the first Joy Ride came out in the same year: 2001).
Director Declan O’Brien (Wrong Turn 5: Bloodlines) keeps it all together on this highway to hell.
While the meat of the movie is the big, bad big-rig vs. the coolest hotrods on the blacktop, Rusty Nail (Kirzinger) doesn’t set his sights on our scantily-clad clique of young street racers until a little ways into the film. It begins with an unconnected set-piece which is quite masterful in its setup and sustained suspense – not to mention its brutal and bloody payoff.
After this, we meet the 20-somethings — Prout, Hollingsworth, Dean Armstrong, and Jesse Hutch — whom we’ll be hitching a ride with for the rest of the flick. They think they are on their way to compete in the Road Rally 1000, but little do they know it’s a race for their lives when Rusty Nail starts picking them off one by one. Ho-hum.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Joy Ride 3is a serviceable enough gore fest and the actors are all up to par, but it’s nothing special. If you’re in the mood for this sort of thing and you’ve already seen Wolf Creek 2, then it’s well worth a look.
This review is based on the film only; the Blu-ray and DVD are available June 17, 2014.
2 1/2 out of 5