Friday, 22 May 2015

Friday Night Screening: Rabid Grannies 1988

Rabid Grannies
The Belgium grandma massacre

You just know that with a title like this, this one’s gonna get interesting. We’ve seen robo-geisha’s, plenty ‘o brain devouring undead and even killer festivities, but the day we’d be looking at a movie in which two grannies possessed by the goddamn devil go on a rampage was a long time coming.
I actually picked this movie up in my favorite second-hand store filled to the brim with movies right into my alley for two reasons. One was obviously the title, but the second was the name that was shamelessly plastered all over the dvd-case: Iloyd Kaufman. For those living under a rock, or actually go outside and have a life, Kaufman is the mind behind TROMA, a company known for some pretty amazing stuff including ‘Surf nazis must die!’ and ‘The toxic avenger’ (for those who still have no idea what I’m on about, he was the guy that cameo’d in JamesGunns’s ‘Guardian of the Galaxy’). Needless to say I’m a fan, so picking it up I hoped this little gem would turn out to be one of Kaufman’s lovechild.  But as it turned out, ‘Rabid Grannies’ was only distributed by TROMA in the United States, but well, it’s still a pretty entertaining flick despite that.

The story is pretty self-explanatory, a family of unlikable asshats attend to the birthday of their rich grandmothers. Every member of the family, knowing the two sweet old ladies won’t be around for much longer, has one goal and one goal only, getting the best spot on the will. Now that would be awful and despicable enough, if the black sheep of the family, a satanic murderer, didn’t send his own gift in the form of a McGuffin that turns the two grannies into demonic possessed nightmares feeding on flesh. As the limbs start flying around it’s up to the family members to survive and show their true colors, be it cowards, heroes in disguise, awful human beings or soon to be lunch.

I actually like this movie, but seeing as it was distributed by TROMA that shouldn’t surprise anyone. The premise is silly enough  to hold the movie pretty well. It’s the first Belgium horror movie I’ve seen and I gotta say, I like the cut of their jibs. Who knew that the Canada of Europe had a pretty good B-movie camp style. The effects are pretty entertaining as well, some pretty outrageous silly stunts performed at the transformation had me laughing pretty damn hard, and although the quality dropped as the movie went on, I still greatly enjoyed what it had to offer. The fact that the victims were a such an unlikable, backhanded, two-faced bunch made it all the more enjoyable when they got their comeuppance. But here we come to one of my problems with the film, at times it seemed to be just a tad bit too cruel to some of the more likable asshats turned heroes. And there is one scene that took me by surprise and I believe they might have crossed the line by a mile on that one. If you’ve seen the movie you probably know what scene I’m talking about, but in case you haven’t, let’s just say the movie went from crazy fun pool party to little jimmy drowned at the bottom cuz the lifeguard was getting his pole polished behind the parking lot by the one legged hooker. There are lines you don’t cross unless you’re willing to approached it with some decency and maturity.
Another thing that bugged me was the non-existent clarity on the grannies’ powers. They are both possessed by demons, so their powers are pretty much changing reality to their wishes. So in theory the movie should be over in less than ten minutes, the only weakness they seemed to have is that the chapel and other houses of god were off-limits.  For the rest, they can pretty much do anything they want. With Freddy Kreuger for example, he can control the reality to his whims but only in the dream world, and only if you’re scared enough of him, otherwise he doesn’t have enough power, so it’s logical for him to toy with his victims to accumulate the fear needed to kill them off, and also the fact that he gets off on that sh*t but that’s a story for another therapy session. The two grannies in this movie seem to do it for the lulz and go with a pretty lazy aptitude about the whole thing. Leading to their unavoidable demise portraying them as kind of a duo of dumbasses.

This movie is entertaining and will leave you with a smile on your face if you have the same kind of humor as me. Apart from one scene and a few minor details I’d say, give it a watch, it ain’t no masterpiece but it’s pretty damn fun.

 Things I've learned from "Rabid Grannies"
- Damn Grandma, u scary
- Hearing the French speaking actors trying to spew English lines was probably one of the more entertain things about this flick.
- It's in moments like these that you realise you're screwed if your priest isn't the kung fu badass from Braindead/Dead-Alive

Personal rating: 6,5
Critical rating: 5

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