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Folks, I spent five years as an employee in a video store. I am the VIDEO STORE GUY. This is why I know so much about direct-to-video rental titles. You can trust me when I tell you that something is, in fact, crap. I can tell you the good and I can tell you the bad. If you haven't seen a movie you'd like to know about, and it's been released in the last two years, just send me a mail at, and I'll let you know about it. Don't go trusting your weekends to the back of the box--read me and find out the best stuff, or at least the best stuff to avoid.

Pinata: Survival Island

2004-08-25 12:41:10
Pinata Survival Island

zero stars


Directed by

David Hillenbrand

Scott Hillenbrand

Written by

David Hillenbrand

Scott Hillenbrand

Nicholas Brendon .... Kyle

Jaime Pressly .... Tina

Garrett Wang .... Paul

Eugene Byrd .... Doug

Kasey Fallo .... Monica

Nate Richert .... Jake

Lara Boyd Rhodes .... Lisa

Ed Gale .... Piata

Julia Mendoza .... Carmen

Daphne Duplaix .... Julie

Aeryk Egan .... Larry

Robert Tena .... Bob

Tressa DiFiglia .... Connie

Syante Villa .... Shaman

Manny Twofeathers .... Piata Maker


85 min

Pinata: Survival Island is the story of college students gone wild, and pinatas gone bad--pinatas with HEARTS, no less.

story, convoluted as it is, goes something like this: Ancient Mayans or
Aztecs or Incans or what have you were getting a little too evil for
their own good, and thus the evil in the village was taken out of them
and put into a pinata that remained undisturbed for several hundred or
even thousand years. If the pinata ever broke, the evil within it would
be unleashed.

And you know that that evil will not want to play canasta when it gets out.

is going well, too...until the drunken college kids show up for a Cinco
de Mayo party and scavenger hunt. Scavenging what, you ask? Why, it's
perfectly obvious when you realize what kind of movie we're dealing
with here--they're scavenging underwear.

It was, in retrospect,
a pretty bad idea to tell these bloated-liver, underwear hunting,
future cirrohsis carriers that there was free tequila hidden inside
pinatas on an island where a demonic pinata is just waiting to be
broken open so it can kill again.

You know the temptation to
break open every single pinata they can find, including the evil one
that looks like something out of a nasty horror movie, must have been
and in fact WAS insurmountable. And of course, the killing begins in
spades, with blood spattered on every flat surface around.

hesitate to "yadda-yadda" movies, but this is one of them. I can't
BELIEVE how awful a retread this one is. It's like Deadly Species all
over again, except whoever wrote this slop thought that adding an evil
pinata would somehow make it all original!

It continues on for
an hour and a half or so, along with several murders that redefine the
term "overkill", until we get ourselves to the truly mystifying ending
to all this.

Do you want to know just how this awful slop ends? Do you?


worst part is this, and I'm not kidding: they really killed the giant,
evil, ceramic pinata by setting it on fire. This makes no sense. This
follows no rational, reasonable, coherent chain of events. I don't even
know where to begin describing how wrong this is.

anyway...after that garbage winds down, we have extra features. We have
Spanish subtitles, so that Spanish speakers can be TWICE as offended by
this nightmare of a film. We also have trailers for Pinata Survival
Island, Bark, and Revelation. And as if that weren't enough, we have
audio settings, commentary, cast bios, filmmaker bios, a segment on the
Chiodos who made the pinata effects, a trivia game that brings new
meaning to the term "trivial pursuit," because that's exactly what it
is, and production stills.

So all in all, Pinata Survival Island
is just one more piece of garbage in the overswelling landfill that is
most of the direct to video industry. Shovelreel, anyone?

have your say

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