Sirens: Mermaids of Doom

SirenAsk any guy who ever served in the Navy, been a seagoing pirate, or ran a glass bottom tourist boat charter, and they’ll tell you a Siren is an allegedly mythical mermaid (half naked cheerleader, half fish) who comb their hair with clam shells and call sailors to their watery graves, drawing them with their sexy sea lumps and irresistible song. (No words, just something that sounds like a very soothing fire alarm.)

SirenSiren is a British horror/thriller movie using this premise, and describes itself as a cross between The Descent (2005), Dead Calm (1989) and Open Water (2004). I saw all of those. The Descent is about seven empowered women who go spelunking ground holes, only to encounter flesh-eating creatures who regard them as delivery pizza. Dead Calm is about a man and woman out sailing in the middle of the ocean that pick up a hitchhiker, who turns out to be a murdering sea turd. Open Water is about a man and woman who go scuba diving in the middle of the ocean, only to be left behind by their discount charter dive boat, and then sharks eat them.

Siren is about a man and a woman and a friend who sail out to an abandoned(?) island for relaxation and the feeling up of the woman. They encounter a knife-wielding madman who tries to warn them about the hot chick out in the water who lures the horn dog men to their doom. Or something like that.

Not seeing the connection. This is made even more confusing by the movie studio’s other comparisons, which is a “thrilling new twist on the teen-in-peril genre along the lines of Cabin and Severance.” Neither had a boat, shark, or death mermaid.

SirenSiren should not be confused with Siren, the 2010 horror fiction book by John Everson, Sirens, the 1994 Hugh Grant movie that deals with a blasphemous painting, a young minister and his wife, and three sexually playful models living with the artist, or the Japanese porno film, Siren (2009), about a naked succubus who is kidnapped by criminals for feeling up purposes, before giving them an unhappy ending.

But since Siren, the British movie, sees fit to compare itself to everything else, it logically stands that it’ll align itself with these as well. Don’t get me wrong; I think the plot holds salt water. It’s just that the whole “teen in peril” genre would be better off with brain-eating mermaids, swimmer-eating sharks, women-eating cannibal creatures, and/or soul-eating blasphemous paintings.

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