Starring Stella Stevens, Shannon Whirry, Luca Bercovici
"Being Granny's favorite can be murder!" -- Greetings, fellow horror fanatics! Welcome to the first installment of "Obscura Macabro", where forgotten and overlooked horror gems are resurrected from celluloid limbo and given a much deserved looking over. Tonight's film: 1995's horror/comedy "The Granny", co-written by, directed by, and starring Luca Bercovici (Ghoulies, Rockula).
I loved every minute of this crude and gory little flick, which plays out like a Night of the Demons/Evil Dead hybrid, with a heavy dosage of one-liners à la Freddy Krueger.
The title alone should let you know what you're in for, and this one has tongue firmly planted in cheek. Granny Anastaa Gargoli (Stella Stevens) has a problem. Not only is she becoming aware of her own mortality, but she has to put up with a money hungry, dimwitted family who prays for her death. Only shy and timid Kelly (Shannon Whirry), her granddaughter and caregiver, truly loves her. Today the vultures are coming over for Thanksgiving, with plans to get rid of the poor old dame. But she's also recieving another guest, a mysterious man named Namon Ami (Luca Bercovici), who brings an elixer that he claims will grant her eternal life. As long as she follows a mple set of instructions while taking the elixer, she won't have to worry about dying and having those "monkeys and magpies" inherit her fortune. Of course, if she followed those instructions, there'd be no movie. After tting at the table for dinner, spewing insults and narrowly surviving a poisoning attempt, she retires back to her room. You really feel bad for Granny, and instantly wish the most excruciating of deaths upon her scheming family. Unfortunately the stress proves to be too much for her, and Granny kicks the bucket, much to everyone but Kelly's delight. The body is carried away to the mortuary, and the family decides to have a party. But Granny ain't finished yet, and the ol' bitch gets up off of the cold slab and heads back to her manon for some revenge. This is where things get fun. It's all so wild and over the top that I don't want to give away too much. Let's just say that one scene in particular stands out, and it involves Granny, her son, oral sex, and a pair of scissors.
Some of the special effects are a bit unconvincing, but that only adds to the movie's overall humorous quality. You're certain to snicker when the daughter-in-law is attacked by Granny's fur collection, which look like a pack of stuffed toys with light up eyes. But it's all part of the fun, and none of this is meant to be taken seriously. Even the violence and gore are played for laughs rather than shock. However, the film does boast a few genuinely creepy moments. As the film progresses, the family members are each done in in grisly fashion and resurrected as equally dimwitted zombies. Even long dead Grandpa shows up, and Granny shares a nice sloppy kiss with his badly decayed corpse. This is one hell of a fun ride, though you have to have a certain taste to enjoy it. It's not an easy film to find, existing only on used VHS and bootleg DVDs,
and has not seen an official digital treatment yet. I had been searching for it for a long time, and was finally able to buy an ex-rental VHS of the film from Amazon.com for about 15 bucks (though the price has increased nce I made my purchase, and you're likely to spend upwards of $85 on a brand new copy). However, I highly recommend that you seek it out.
Stella Stevens as Granny is absolutely epic, and you'll be quoting her filthy one-liners for days. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kB9qTpTGp1A If you're looking for the next Oscar-winning snoozefest, you might want to give this one a pass. But if you're like me, and love a good dose of sleazy, campy humor mixed in with your horror every once in a while, then give ol' Granny a chance. She's sure to show you one hell of a time!
Overall Rating: 5 out of 5