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3 reviews

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Movie Details

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Directed By
John Stockwell

Written By:
Michael Ross

Josh Duhamel, Melissa George, Desmond Askew, Beau Garrett, Olivia Wilde, Max Brown, Raul Guterres, Andréa Leal

Turistas (2006)
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Movie Review by Jarrod
August 25th, 2007

'Turistas' is little more than a Hostel rip-off, only it has people getting their organs removed for actual medical use, rather than being tortured and killed for the sake of sadistic entertainment and personal thrills. A trio of Americans, Bea (Olivia Wilde), her brother Alex (Duhamel) and her friend Amy (Beau Garrett) go to Brazil, when their tour bus crashes, and they meet two British brothers, a seasoned traveler named Pru (Melissa George), who can speak Portuguese, and two Swedes, and they all party it up at a secluded beach bar, where they get drunk, and then get robbed, waking up the next day to find everything stolen but their clothes. Tracking down the perps, they stumble into Kiko (Agles Steib), a local they met the night before, who escorts them out of a hostile village, and promises to take them to his uncle's house, which sits in the middle of the jungle.

Of course, it really isn't a place of refuge, but the headquarters of a doctor named Zamora, who removes livers and kidneys from "gringos" and takes them to a hospital where they can be given to poor Brazilians who desperately needs them. He is motivated by either genuine concern, or madness and cruelty, and he justifies his own immoral actions with the historical mistreatment and exploitation of Brazil by white Europeans. In any sense, it has everything Hostel does, and seems to take less time to get to the good stuff, with ample doses of nudity and gore, which is what most would expect from a movie like this.

No sex to speak of, even in the unrated version, which is quite a letdown, but then there are dozens of other ways to get the young, attractive cast to take off their shirts, especially Duhamel, who spends most of his screen time topless. There is a lot of beautiful scenery, which is photographed well, especially the underwater caves in which the climactic chase scene takes place, not to mention the beach and the jungle. Impressive cinematography aside, the movie simply lacks originality or real suspense, it often borders on ludicrous, and it doesn't even make you squirm, as Hostel did.

The actors can scream, cry, and run, which is all that is really required of them, and they do stupid things, which helps them get killed or captured a lot faster. Director John Stockwell previously did Into the Blue, with Paul Walker, another lackluster movie with gorgeous underwater shots, and a lead hunk who exposes his chest a lot. Kind of the same with the surfer flick Blue Crush, also by Stockwell. 'Turistas' is a turn towards the menacing, but that is one adjective you could not use to describe it effectively.

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