- Eddie Harrison
- 21 May 2007
Having already flopped under the title Turistas in the US last November, John Stockwell’s limp lettuce of a thriller finally emerges in the UK as little more than a smudged photocopy of Eli Roth’s Hostel.
It’s not Slovenia but Brazil that young backpacker Alex (Josh Duhamel) and his friends find themselves marooned on when their bus rolls off a cliff. The beach front sanctuary they stumble across turns out to be anything but safe as it is next door to an informal centre for compulsory organ donation.
Getting into trouble with the natives abroad has been a zeitgeist notion in US cinema of late, but the bland directorial hallmarks previously established in Stockwell’s anaemic exploitation flicks Blue Crush and Into The Blue (nice locations, pretty girls, underwater action) don’t lend themselves to any kind of interesting political analogy. The subtext is in fact limited to a few passing cracks about ‘gringos’. Appealing only to the small subsection of horror fans who haven’t seen Hostel and its forebears, Paradise Lost is a grubby knock-off of a considerably smarter and better-executed film.