Grabbers – 7
Director – Jon Wright
Cast – Richard Coyle, Ruth Bradley, Russell Tovey, Lalor Roddy, David Pearse, Bronagh Gallagher, Pascal Scott, Clelia Murphy, Louis Dempsey, Micheál O’Gruagain
Release Year – 2012
Reviewed by John of the Dead
Grabbers is a film I was very excited to see because it offered me a new/recent creature film that is not of poor quality and comes from a country that I long to see more horror from…Ireland. The Irish films that I have come across recently properly play on the beautiful landscapes and atmosphere the country provides, and that combined with the creature element lead me to assume I would enjoy this one. With awesome creatures, positive gore, and plenty of good laughs provided by a comical storyline, Grabbers was a fun watch that I recommend to fans of creature flicks.
When an island off the coast of Ireland is invaded by bloodsucking aliens, the heroes discover that getting drunk is the only way to survive.
“Getting drunk is the only way to survive.”, that should let you know what to expect from this piece – drunken fun! Not everyone likes stereotypical humor (although the biggest comedians these days make their living off that), but I found this stereotypical humor – poking fun at the Irish and their love for alcohol – to be fun because it involved the byproduct of drinking lots of alcohol…foolish drunkenness. The grabbers make their presence known to the viewer early on, and while I wanted more kills we did get plenty of them and they were pretty awesome in how the kills were performed. Because these creatures suck the blood from their victims, they devour the victim whole and spit out the victim’s decapitated head, usually falling right at the feet of the victim’s cohorts. The creatures were big and small, with the big ones delivering the carnage and the small ones delivering some silly fun. Our main protagonists are the island’s only two officers, Garda Ciaran O’Shea and Garda Lisa Nolan, who also happen to be unarmed officers that must utilize makeshift weapons to fend off the grabbers. Them having to rely on ineffective weaponry added to the conflict they must face in keeping the town safe, but they make good on a revelation. They learn that the only person to survive an encounter with a grabber is the town drunk, leading them to realize that alcohol in the bloodstream is toxic to a grabber. To ensure the town’s safety they devise a genius plan to get the entire town drunk…for their safety, and for the most part it works. Eventually this leads to a nowhere to run scenario for the protagonists, a scenario I always enjoy and one that played off like The Mist, adding to the numerous positive elements this simple story provides.
Director Jon Wright is a big reason behind my enjoyment of this experience, giving us awesome atmosphere that supplements the awesome horror. I was not too happy that most of the creature sequences involved CGI creatures, but the FX were pretty good and much to my surprise did not hold the film back in the end. The horror was great and as mentioned earlier the grabbers’ killing method was fun and brutal. We are provided with good performances from everyone involved, with these Irish folk doing a pretty good job at portraying drunk people…and I’ll let you
form your own conclusions on that. The film is never really scary although the scenes involving the biggest grabber had some good tension thanks to the quality of the FX, and Wright proves he can execute horror with proper camerawork to keep us guessing at the right times and then shove the grabber-induced gore in our faces when the moment is right.
Overall, Grabbers is a fun creature flick from Ireland that comes with a fun story and excellent creature action. The laughs are plentiful without the film being a devout horror/comedy, and the pacing is just right with enough death scenes to keep us engaged. Director Jon Wright gives us plenty of what we want to see and manages to leave out the negative elements associated with such flicks, making for one of the better creature films I have seen in a while.