The Greasy Strangler

Empire Magazine told me that I needed to see this film. They also told me that having done so I would never want to watch it again. Well, they were right with one of those.

Clearly there are those that are impressed by the comedy ultra-violence, the excessive swearing, the cheesy acting and the extreme nudity but I’m not among them. It’s not that I’m against these per se; I really like Kick Ass, Paul, the 1960s Batman and Blue is the Warmest Colour. It’s not even that I’m anti the idea of putting them all together in one movie. It‘s that The Greasy Strangler is not funny. It isn’t shocking, it isn’t suspenseful or surprising or smart, it isn’t brave and it isn’t compelling.

What it is is weird which seems be enough for some. It’s not surreal weird though, it’s just weird. The story tells of an out of shape father and son who run bogus tours of disco venues, eat food drowning in cooking fat and fight over the affections of the same woman. Oh, and one of them is a serial killer. It is trying consciously to be a cult film but it just comes over like a Chuckle Brothers version of The Silence of the Lambs. The humour seems to centre round just repeating the weak punchlines over and over again in the hope that the audience will give up and find them funny and the 80s computer game soundtrack is infuriating.

Sorry Empire, you’ve been my trusted adviser for over twenty years and I still love you but you owe me the £3.49 it cost to rent this from iTunes.


The Ripley Factor:

There is female nudity in the film but it isn’t done to objectify women and it is actually far outweighed by the male nakedness. The female lead is forthright but she is no role model.


Is this one for the kids?

Certainly not. The Greasy Strangler is rated 18. The violence is over the top but it isn’t realistic, scary or disturbing. The sight of a grown man slathered in grease so that he can disguise himself and kill people, isn’t scary either. It’s just gross. The film is billed as a black comedy but it is more of a slimy, yellowy, browny one.


The Greasy Strangler is in a few unfortunate cinemas and on demand.

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