Earlier this week I watched a teen horror movie on satellite TV: Wrong Turn, released in 2003. I'd been watching for it since I first saw it advertised, because the trailers revealed it was set in West Virginia and featured frightening hillbillies doing terrible things to vacationing suburbanites. With all the tourists visiting Pocahontas County (especially the despised skiers throwing their Starbucks cups and other trash out the car windows as they drive home from Snowshoe Resort) some local residents consider such cinema wish fulfillment. To my delight, the opening action sported this subtitle: "Greenbrier backcountry, West Virginia." (Check my photo at left--Greenbrier backcountry as seen from my neighbor's yard this morning.) Not only do Wrong Turn's hillbillies terrorize annoying city folk, but they do it in my backyard! While many writers have selected West Virginia as their setting for mayhem and uncivilized behavior, we believe this is the only movie that has the inbred mountain men actually eating the rich.
Now, nobody viewing this movie could expect it to win a prize at Sundance, but some of the amazon.com reviewers consider the movie "good of its kind." Of course paid reviewers don't approve. For example, Fox Channel 11 out of Charleston, WV archived this review of the movie, in which reviewer Kenny Bass says:
"West Virginia doesn't inspire movie makers to spin tales of sophisticated romantic comedy or high flying action. No, instead we get "Wrong Turn." Set in the Greenbrier backcountry, it's the story of six young people stuck in the middle of the woods....it really doesn't bother me that "Wrong Turn" depicts West Virginians as toothless, mindless, cannibalistic, inbred hillbillies, hunting and eating innocent tourists, rafters and mountain climbers. No, what really upsets me is the movie isn't very good....Oh, and there's one final insult. It wasn't even filmed in West Virginia. They shot it in Canada. Thanks for nothing."
Here on Droop Mountain, in the Greenbrier backcountry, we consider Wrong Turn propaganda for our cause. We'd like to have it played continuously on cable TV at Snowshoe Resort, or perhaps it could alternate with "Deliverance."