Story: A big ol’ grizzly terrorizes a section of wilderness. A park ranger is ready to kill that thing dead. But first, that grizzly is gonna mess up some campers but good.
Scares: 70s cheesy animal-horror = scares only for n00bs.
Splat factor: Meh. Some blood and Grizzly-POV “gore”.
Closing scene “shocker”?: Nup.
Remake, Sequel or OG (Original Ghoul)?: Original, though it cribs the Jaws story pretty good.
Trick or Treat?: A classic of bad-horror, this “animal amok!!!11!” film is 1 1/2 hours of hilarious fun. Yeah, the book scared the hell out of me when I first read it…but I was ten, so I’m giving myself a pass. Nowadays the film is one probably best watched in its MST3K/Rifftrax incarnation. And with a tag line like “18 feet of gut-crunching, man-eating terror!” you’ve gotta see it if only to laugh at how a great tag line got wasted on this movie.
Bad and/or hammy acting, stupid characters (why does everyone DROP THEIR GUNS?) and stock footage of a bear running who knows where rounds out this story. I’d say more about this, but there’s really nothing else to say. As much as I enjoy big animal horror, Grizzly feels padded even with its short run time. 70s character actor legends Christopher George and Andrew Prine are here to chew the scenery the grizzly doesn’t get to. And hey – did that grizzly just pull a Jason Voorhees and kill people sleeping in sleeping bags? Well, as Jason came around after this, looks like Jason pulled a Grizzly…
But do try to find the novelization of this movie if you’re able. It’s only available through second sources as it’s out of print – c’mon Kindle, get with it – but well worth the search, as it’s a whole lot better than this movie would have you believe.
Score: 2.5 out of 5 pumpkins. This film gets a half-star bump-up because the shots of a real bear were of a bear named…wait for it…Teddy.