It's spring break in the town of Lake Victoria and the harbour is swamped with thrill-seeking party-goers hellbent on having a good time. As local sheriff Julie Forester (Elisabeth Shue) tries to keep them in line, the discovery of a badly mangled corpse threatens to ruin the party atmosphere.
Little do the townsfolk know that a minor earthquake has unleashed a school of deadly prehistoric piranha that can strip the flesh off a human body in seconds. As the terrifying fish begin to attack, Julie races to save both the holiday-makers and her family, but the vicious critters have a taste of blood and an insatiable appetite for human flesh.
Absolutely bloody bonkers would be the best way to describe this unashamedly trashy remake of the 1978 Jaws knock-off. Beginning with an ace cameo by Richard Dreyfuss that cheekily sends up his part in Steven Spielberg's classic, Piranha soon descends into a highly watchable bloodbath of terrible CGI effects, gratuitous nudity and gory demises.
Alexandre Aja, who directed Mirrors and the recent remake of The Hills Have Eyes, has nevertheless pulled a blinder by recruiting a fine cast, particularly nominee Shue, who somehow manages to keep the proceedings from descending too far into total farce. Also worth mentioning is Britain's own Kelly Brook whose nude swimming exploits with another busty model form the basis of one of the film's most outlandishly exploitative scenes.
Wonderfully OTT and gorily silly, Piranha delivers the kind of senselessly enjoyable Friday night fun that other horror films can only promise.