"The guiltiest of guilty pleasure movies," that's how Eli Roth, recounting the sentiments of director Alexander Aja, described the conceptual approach to Piranha 3D. Eli did his best bad French accent as he regaled the Alamo Drafthouse audience with anecdote after anecdote about the director; a welcome prelude to this midnight screening. As someone who worships at the altar of guilty pleasures, a director's self-awareness of this characteristic always makes me a bit uneasy. Making a film as stupid as it can possibly be in the hopes that your being cognizant of its stupidity somehow legitimizes it does not a true guilty pleasure film make. In fact, I am of the opinion that most people can only pull off guilty pleasure by accident so hearing those words co-opted as Aja's directorial mantra flipped the switch on my pessimism machine.
And then the film started and all doubts were quickly chewed up and spit out.