(Welcome to DTV Descent, a collection that explores the weird and also wild human being of direct-to-video sequels to theatrically released movies. In this edition, we hit the road through troublemaking youths and a murderous trucker called Rusty Nails.)

If you didn"t understand it previously or intuitively, horror movies are the ones many most likely to see a direct to video follow-up in the years complying with a successful theatrical release. Sometimes, though, we obtain sequels to movies that bombed however later found a cult complying with – witness the abomicountry that is The Hitcher II: I"ve Been Waiting – and that"s type of where we"re landing through this week"s DTV Descent entry.

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I say "type of" because 2001"s Joy Ride faibrought about find profit in theaters having earned ago simply a little even more than its budacquire. It found its legs – wheels? – on home video and also cable, and also it"s tbelow wbelow 20th Century Fox"s Home Entertainment department witnessed dollar indicators. Eventually. Salso years after the original"s release, a DTV sequel hit shelves, and also six years after that a third film rolled onto home video. At this rate we should mean a Happiness Ride 4 to be announced by the end of 2019.

Keep reading as we take a look at the two punnily titled DTV sequels to Delight Ride to see if they"re worth the road trip to your local video store.


Lewis and Venna are college friends who decide to drive residence on break throughout the Western United States, but any hope he has of prospering closer to her is squelched by the forced inclusion of Lewis" troublemaking brother Fuller. The brothers quickly discover themselves in a brutal jam after pranking a truck driver over the CB radio, and also the terror proceeds after picking up Venna. The male, self-established as one Rusty Nails, displays a wickedly violent sensibility and also shortly targets the 3 for a cruelly drawn-out game of revenge destined to leave a trail of carnage on and also off the sparsely lived in highway. Bodies hit the pavement, but after a tense face-off the 3 college children walk away via their resides... as does Mr. Nail.


Joy Ride 2: Dead Ahead (2008) opens through Rusty Nail murdering a truck-speak prostitute (in a manner that would plainly serve as an inspiration for Ari Aster a decade later) before driving off into the night. Melissa and also Bobby are a young couple heading to Las Vegregarding tie the knot, but what they do not know is that at least one of them will certainly be involuntarily bound and gagged well prior to they reach the state line. Melissa"s younger sister Kayla is alengthy for the ride, and also the excellent times hit a bump as soon as she picks up her internet "boyfriend" Nik. They met on Myspace, but don"t issue, she Googled his name to confirm he isn"t a serial killer. The newcomer suggests a shortcut, and if you think it leaves the 4 shed and also stranded in the middle of nowhere, well, pat yourself on the back. They break right into a ramshackle house and steal the car in the garage, and while that"s a poor contact in basic, it"s made worse in that the residence is Rusty Nail"s residence. Fools! Understandably peeved by their intrusion and theft, he sets out to make their road expedition as miserable as feasible leaving only among the 4 standing by the end... along with Mr. Nail.


As is frequently the case, this simply isn"t a fair comparichild. The 2001 original is directed by John Dahl, and also while he"s missing from the cinema these days the filmmaker previously gave us legit gems prefer The Last Seduction (1994) and also Rounders (1998). He assisted craft the film right into an atmospheric thriller, and also the script came through its own hefty hitter in the develop of co-writer J.J. Abrams. This walso prior to he fell in love with trick boxes and rather just delivers a tight, entertaining tale. Marco Beltrami"s score adds to the mix and also helps shape the adrenaline-fueled suspense scenes. Cast-wise, all three of the leads below are recognizable encounters in the create of Paul Walker, Steve Zahn, and also Leelee Sobieski. Rusty Nail is always in the shadows, however he"s voiced by the great Ted Levine providing him all the weight that comes through Levine"s memorable vocals. And bonus, Walton Goggins is a background police officer!

Dead Ahead won"t turn any kind of heads via its actors, yet director Louis Morneau has visited both the highs and lows of my genre-loving heart. Unfortunately, the mad genius who made me swoon with Retroactive (1997) is nowbelow to be found below and we"re instead stuck to him in Carnosaur 2 (1995) mode. Roadkill"s writer/director Declan O"Brien has nine attribute films to his name, and six of them are DTV sequels. So that tells you what"s up via that. His cast fares only slightly much better because co-star Sara Mitich newly joined the actors of TV"s Star Trek: Discovery. That"s a genuine show that people watch!


In case it"s not clear by now, neither sequel also ideologies the thrills of the original, but Roadkill does improve a little on the action front over Dead Ahead. They do hold true to their predecessor in minor methods. For one point, they keep Rusty Nail as the constant killer. Most serial killers are truck drivers after all – definitely not true, however someone states it in among the sequels so we"ll play along – and the films craft him right into someone qualified of holding dvery own a job while likewise eluding police despite leaving literal body trails in his wake. The various other narrative threview in between the films is that there"s constantly an asshole in the team whose actions somehow catch Rusty Nail"s attention. Zahn"s obnoxious troublemaker succeeds, though, because he"s still entertaining and also inevitably regretful, however that brings us to wbelow the sequels diverge.

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There are no likable characters in either of the sequels! One of the necessities in a lot of excellent horror/thriller films is at least one character viewers deserve to root for and/or treatment about. We gain none of that in the sequels definition we give absolutely zero s***s when they"re crumelted, smashed, and also otherwise dispatched. Zahn"s prickish habits functions because he"s a talented enough perprevious in that we"re along for his laughs and think in his redemption, however the characters right here are just jerks, and also worse, they"re dull. The movies try to have actually Rusty pick up the sabsence in the personality department, yet the end result is a cheesy, wise-cracking killer who talks as well damn a lot (by means of ADR it seems). Tright here are entire scenes of him yammering away! It entirely removes his mystery and moves him from being an intriguing threat to simply another poorly composed movie "monster."

Dahl"s original Delight Ride stays a solidly entertaining thriller that can virtually sit side by side via the under-appreciated yet brilliant The Hitcher (1986) in the list of great road expedition horror/thriller movies. The sequels, though, rank far closer to the abysmal disaster that is The Hitcher II (2003). So the takeamethod right here is to drive safe, be considerate on the road, and also stick through the franchise originals at all times.