Wednesday, August 8, 2012
DVD Review: GRIM (2010)
Written and Directed by Adrian Santiago
Distributed by Troma Entertainment and CAV Distribution
You never know what you are going to get with a Troma film. Troma has lots of fans and a cult following for sure, and the movies they actually make are usually always lots of fun. But it's these 3rd party type films that you just never know about. These are the films that Troma just buys the rights to distribute. Some can be pretty bad, but every now and then you run into one that is really good. I am happy to report that GRIM falls into the latter category. In fact this is one of the better of the Troma distributed films I think I have seen. For those unfamilar with this film, here is the basic plot from the film's imdb.com page:
After unsuccessful attempts to revive our ailing economy, the US is forced to cut funding to rural, low-population areas of the nation leaving millions to "fend for themselves". Amid ongoing territorial disputes, Nicholas Grim is forced to witness the brutal murder of his parents by Armed Militant Forces in Texas. Now an adult, Grim vows to avenge his family and uncover their killer's motives.
I had never heard of this film before receiving this one for review, and I am pretty surprised by that. I really and surprised that more people within the horror community aren't talking about this one. The film starts off with a bang and never really lets up.
The film starts with the kidnapping of a family. The young boy in the family, Nicholas Grim, is forced to watch the brutal beatings and then eventual killings of both his Mother and Father. I have to admit, this scene was hard to watch. It was acted well, and the sheer brutality of the kidnappers and total disregard for the parents lives was chilling. They even knocked little Nicholas out and left him for dead, although a man who heard the gunshots came and found him and took him home.
Cut to some years later, and little Nicholas Grim is all grown up and has been living with the man and woman that found Nicholas all those years ago. His adoptive parents finally sit him down and explain to him who the kidnappers were all those years ago (Nicholas had supplied the names when he was little, but the man thought he was too young to have everything explained to him at that time).
The killers were a group called the U.A.B. (United American Brigade), and they were still around and causing trouble. When this group meets up with Nicholas' adoptive family and kills them, then he has had enough. He snaps into a fit of rage and vows revenge against the killers that have taken two sets of parents away from him.
Grim really turns up the heat, starting by torturing a member of the U.A.B. that comes to his house by tying the man up and making him give the name of the U.A.B. leader. The man doesn't want to give up the name, but when Grim starts pulling out his fingernails with a pair of pliers, he eventually gives in and gives Grim the name he looking for. This scene is another that is very hard to watch...the pulling out of the fingernails effect was done very well and will make you cringe in agony!
The movie goes into a more deeper plot as Grim joins a group that is against the U.A.B. and battles them to the death! GRIM was done very well. There was no CGI effects that I noticed, every gore effect was a practical effect. I have no clue what the budget was like on this film, but it pretty obvious it was very low budget film. GRIM is proof that you can make a great low budget film if you have a good story, good actors, and a good director in charge. Now, don't get me wrong, I am not saying that the acting in this movie is great on all accounts, but over all it was well done.
I would recommend this film to most any horror fan. It is not typical of a Troma film, this one is a lot more darker shocking than most of the films they distribute. The before mentioned shocking opening scene still comes to mind.
GRIM is available now on DVD and contains the following Special Features:
* Commentary track by director Adrian Santiago
* "The Art of Dismemberment" - A behind-the-scenes slideshow
* Introduction by Lloyd Kaufman
CLICK HERE to watch the trailer
CLICK HERE to purchase the DVD