Grizzly was released in 1976 and another entry in the PG era, which is insanity. I can’t believe these were horror movie releases with such tame ratings, and yet today, we can’t come up with a good movie that is in the same genre with the same kind of iconic punch. Whatever the case is, this is not an epic, it’s not going to win awards and most people will find this to be just like the reviewers stated in the past, “Jaws” on the land. Yeah, that is a fitting tribute, but it’s a bit worse than the mighty shark film, even if LJN didn’t make a video game after this one.
The movie follows a group of campers that are just chilling and not dealing with any of your normal traps. Even though the opening showcases a good bear attack, it won’t haunt your dreams, that’s for sure. As campers are killed, you have a chief ranger that is set on closing things down and trying to set up a party that will take out the 18 foot beast. Of course, no story would be good without a good sense of danger, scares, and jump scenes, right? Well you get it all in this schlock fest of a film from the 1970s.
The story components are all the same that you would expect from a giant monster film, and nothing is really done that well here. Sure, there are some strong story elements, but in the full frame of things you are going to get a lot of slow down and ramp up for a bear that is laughable at best. Sure, it’s better than some of the ones that I’ve seen in recent years even though some were passable.
Perhaps the best thing about Grizzly is that it’s not a man in a bear suit, it’s a real bear. Yes, a real bear is used through the film and it’s not half bad. Mix a serial killer movie, with nature and you may start to see this one develop before your very eyes. The whole natural killing elements, camp sequences, and screaming will definitely have you smiling, but it’s far from “classic”.
Grizzly does have some good scenes, and the filmmakers didn’t completely botch this one. I don’t hate it, but I feel that it hasn’t stood the test of time. It’s definitely something to put on during your Halloween season of watching horror films, but repeated viewings? Well, only diehards will want to get Grizzly and watch it over and over. Not me, but I’m not really a measuring stick.
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