Thursday, May 11, 2006

Greenbrier Back Country: Here Be Cannibals

Greenbrier back country, as seen from the ridge where I live

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.

Movie Poster: Wrong Turn

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."

16 comments:

FuzzyFaceFreak said...

I don't know what to fear more in the West Virginia hills...Hillbillies or Mothman!!

Anonymous said...

i think that it is stuipd that wrong turn is based on a place in and near greenbrier i live on droop aqnd the last btime i checked there arent any caniblas runing around it is plainly just something that an idoitic movie writer made up and it really poiss me of

Anonymous said...

WRONG TURN IS A GGGGRRRRRRRRRREEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAATTTTTTTTTTTTT MOVIE!!!!!!! THATS THE WHOLE POINT ITS JUST A MOVIE DONT TAKE IT PERSONALLY,1/2 OF MOVIES MADE R FAKE,GET REAL FOKES ITS JUST A MOVIE!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

then why did all of those people go freakin missing in the back country mountains from 1991-1998

lunatidoido said...

To the people of Greenbrier:Despite the movie was no shot in your place, but in canada, feel happy about the propaganda. I´m from Brazil and never heard about your place before. So, here is an idea for people who lives in Greenbrier: in order to atract some tourists, weare a mutant redneck fantasy!

Anonymous said...

hey I'm from VA but a part that's very close to WVA and I agree that this movie should be shown at snoeshoe to show the stupid rich/city idiots what could be roaming the backhills

Lee said...

I live in West virginia myself. I have watched Wrong Turn over and over again. I really like thriller movies. I was watching it a few minutes ago. West Virginia is a beatiful place. I know there are real cannibals, but I don't think I have seen any yet to my knowledge. I hope and pray I never do. I have heard that there are inbreds here. But if you think about it, there are inbreds in every state.

Anonymous

Lee said...

I have heard a little about Mothman and plan to look it up. I am watching Wrong Turn 2 as I type this. Just got through watching the first one.
Anonymous.

Jennifer Bragg said...

I am from Lincoln Co. WV and I love this movie. It is one of my favorites and I think everone should leave the screenwriter alone. Hell, give him a high five.

Anonymous said...

I know the people in the film or people like them. They are really from the hills of California. I have been there and seen people just like them.

Anonymous said...

"especially the despised skiers throwing their Starbucks cups and other trash out the car windows as they drive home from Snowshoe Resort"
I wouldn't be supprised if they weren't locals.
i was driving into marlington one day and up ahead of me was a pickup with a young man tossing full garbage bags out of the bed of the truck!
---------STEREOTYPES-----
I have many family members that were born and raised in pocahontas county. I spend a fair amount of time there and I am dissapointed at the truth of some of the sterotypes that are portrayed about mountaineers. Obviously the cannibalism is far fetched, but most of the other characteristics are pretty close to home. I have to admit that in my family and friends that I grew up with in pocahontas co., there is a different way of life , one that i was raised with. a difference in morals.(or lack there of)I don't say this with any type of vengence or hate, but dissapointment. after being away for so long, almost two decades, It is evident that there is a different set of standards for just what is acceptable behavior. It is inbred if you will, or ingrained may be better. in my family and circle of friends,there is incest, molestation, perversion, adultry is around 90%, and it seems that it is just o.k. these things are mostly laughed at and joked about. vulgarities are the common language, alchohol, chewing tobacco, cigarettes, are for all ages. In my younger years, i took great pride in some of these things as they gained status for me, now i am ashamed and embarresed at the fact that i was apart of some of them. when i come up to visit, it's like no one ever grew up. my sisters and their adult children, and many of my old friends who haven't moved out of the county, grown men women, still gossip about affairs, adulteries, drunken nights out with old flames, broken homes,... just gossip. To most of the United States, this isn't normal, just hill billies back in the sticks.
what is it that causes the culture? I would think that it is exposure. behavior passed down from one generation to the next. I got out in my twenties and married into a family with no connections, so that put me into a new way of living and thinking. I always felt that these things were wrong but when it is status quo, you tend not to care as much. "when in rome,..."

rebecca,
if your first generation then maybe you haven't been exposed as much, and if your second or more then there is a good chance that we are related and you know exactly what i am talking about :-)

Anonymous said...

ok, im from Iowa, and movies like the Crazies and children of the corn were filmed here.. i guess i don't see why people of west virginia get so offended.. its not like people actually believe that you guys have cannibals there.

Anonymous said...

I grew up in West Virginia and I dont really find it offensive. It's just producers and writers makin a livin and entertain people. I auctually thought it was good especially the second one.

Anonymous said...

Im from Fayette County WV and I laughed through most of it. lol it was meant to be a triller but I had to laugh at Billy Bob the gas station attendant with his one tooth! lmao but its a movie so why be offended.

Anonymous said...

I have been in WV and have relatives (a lot of them) in the area.

Cannibals? Never met one in the area. Though, having seen the diets of some who needed money, I would not put it past someone in dire need. While we hear of it all the time, even more since the "zombie movies" started, there are few who practice it in the US, or in other nations.

Inbreeding? Yes, this is a problem. In more than one family tree I have been looped in circles because a distant cousin married another. It wasn't uncommon in the 1800s, when most of VA and WV were filled with small towns and few families. Thanks to the war, there were even fewer men, so...

The worst part was when I worked at a hospital in WV and everyone was related to each other except me. I may have understood, but the sexual relations that went on in the staff, again, who were related, bothered me. When they said it was a family business, they meant it!

All in all, I prefer the area, sans people. But, being an outsider, I'm just not welcome, even though I have family there.

Unknown Phantom said...

I think it is annoying that movies never get filmed in West Virginia. I like the "Silent Hill" movies (because I played the Video Games) and the movies are depicted in WV! I Live in Buckhannon. In my opinion Silent Hill should have been filmed here,During Strawberry festival. Lol around 4 am this town during a foggy morning looks like a Silent Hill. Its stupid that film makers are too lazy to Film I mean actually film here! But its "cheaper" to film in Canada, bastards! We Need our 15 mins of fame lol just saying.