Directed by: John Wright
Written by: Kevin Lehane
Cast: Richard Coyle, Ruth Bradley, Russell Tovey, Lalor Roddy, David Pearse, Bronagh Gallagher
For my first ever Sundance film (also, first ever world premier of a film) I could not be happier with the way everything went. A few hours of wait-listing on tickets eventually turned into two random guys selling theirs off, guaranteeing us a spot to see the premier. At this point, I had been running on almost 48 hours of no sleep, so my excitement THAT late at night had to be due to my ignorance of how overtired I was. But enough about that, let’s get to the real gem here: Grabbers
In what can only be described as an homage to 80’s monster films, Grabbers actually does what most other films of the genre couldn’t: be good. While watching, I couldn’t help but start to remember other similar movies like Tremors and Shaun of the Dead (in fact, in a Q&A after the showing, the writer had said that a big inspiration for the film did actually come from pieces like Tremors and Gremlins). Yet, there were some concerns for me walking in to an indie scifi/horror film. It could either be another Attack the Block, or it could become part of the genre they (slightly) aimed to poke fun at.
Grabbers, simply put, is the story of a small fishing town in Scotland that succumbs to an alien invasion. Not many people in the town know about it, but those who do know that there is only one way to combat it: Getting completely shithoused. Overall, the story mirrors what B-monster movies should be, with a much different direction. It’s a very funny movie with some choice scenes that add to the ridiculousness of the premise, but this isn’t what it’s supposed to be. And I don’t mean that in a bad way; I just really appreciated that this was first and foremost supposed to be a monster movie.
Monster movies, in my opinion, can be great or terrible depending on one thing: how they portray (or reveal) the monster. For me, I love when monster movies don’t show the actual monster. That’s what made Jaws so frightening; when you don’t show the monster, the audience will never know what to expect. Fear derives from the unexpected. Grabbers was able to do this for alittle bit, but ended up revealing it a half hour through. It was alittle bit of a disappointment, but at the same time, it was awesome seeing it. For such a small budget, the creature graphics were UNREAL. Anyone who has an interest for things like that will most definitely enjoy this film.
Grabbers, overall, did a great job taking a genre and adding some fun ridiculousness to it. Though some of the characters seemed one-dimensional and bland, it added to the whole “B-movie” feel of it. The creature effects were my favorite part about this whole film. The fact they could do what they were able to with a $5.1 million budget really showed the talent of their creature designer. For monster movie lovers, you will not be dissapointed