Grabbers is an old fashioned monster movie. Following in the tradition of Tremors and Slither, the film blends comedy and horror into a delightful little romp through a small town of kooks. The film’s monsters, tentacled blood suckers from space, are just menacing enough to keep the suspense going while their achilles’ heel provides the main well of comedy (with the natives’ deadpan delivery shouldering the rest). See, as the grabbers are blood-drinkers, the only way to fend them off is by toxifying one’s blood – in other words, getting irresponsibly drunk.
Grabbers is essentially the Irish Tremors. Instead of a desert town in the middle of nowhere we have a small island off the coast of Ireland, and while the graboids can only slither through loose soil, the grabbers can only survive where it’s wet. Both films manage the delicate balance of the scares v. laughs ratio, with Tremors favoring the comedy side and Grabbers favoring a little more romance. However, the film really takes off in its second act when the police corral the whole town in the local pub to get them snookered.
Grabbers doesn’t really bring anything new to the genre but its leads, the buttoned up Officer Lisa Nolan (Ruth Bradley) and the alcoholic O’Shea (Richard Coyle), share a great chemistry, especially after their dynamics flip and O’Shea must sober up while Lisa is persuaded to blow a .2. It’s a winsome little movie that doesn’t quite reach the self-deprecating brilliance of Slither or the tactical cat-and-mouse of Tremors, but it is a worthy addition to the creature feature family.
Directed by Jon Wright
For more film reviews, check out Pierce Nahigyan’s Article Archive