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Ginger Snaps (2000)

by on 2010/07/10

Red ink, scarlet viscous ooze, great arches of arterial spray, crimson splatter, glistening  burgundy entrails, dripping strawberry coulis atop an enormous puberty celebration cake. Ginger Snaps does blood and er, blood-like metaphors like no other movie I’ve seen in recent memory.

This terrific horror film and black comedy also waves a bright red Canadian flag, and is another in our series of Canadian content films for July.

The story centres around death-obsessed Fitzgerald sisters Brigitte (Emily Perkins) and Ginger (Katharine Isabelle). Both wear black clothes, sensible shoes, bird skulls around their necks and vow to one another to “never go average” on each other. Their hobbies include zipping each other up into body bags and simulating suicide.

The girls live with their deluded suburban parents Henry (John Bourgeois) and Pamela (Mimi Rogers) who turn a blind eye to the goings-on in their basement bunker bedroom. Both girls are disinterested in anyone but each other and are late to the funnest part of female puberty party — “the curse.”

On top of all of this teenage angst, there’s something hunting and killing in their McMansion Bailey Downs neighbourhood. Dogs are turning up dead and frankly, blenderized every night. Word to the wise: this is definitely not a film for the Marley and Me dog lover set.

When the girls set out on a night mission to take revenge on a peroxided and permed bully, Ginger experiences a bit of bad timing only possible in truly terrifying horror films. She gets the curse and is simultaneously bitten by a “lycanthrope” aka werewolf. Just when you think things can’t get weirder for the two sisters, weird grows hair, fangs and huge brown talons.

As Ginger becomes increasingly dangerous, Brigitte battles to find a cure and cover up Ginger’s urm, indiscretions. Brigitte finds an ally in an unusually versed and sympathetic drug dealer Sam (Kris Lemche) who researches some solutions for the girls’ monstrous’ issues.

Not only does this film deliver the creepy and some genuinely black-humour laughs but is chock full of Canadian content goodness. Watch for a funny performance from Peter Keleghan of Newsroom fame, playing Mr. Wayne the girls’ freaked-out teacher and guidance counsellor.

If you are looking for chills by a full moon this summer, check out bloody clever Ginger Snaps.

* * * *

Rated R for bloody violence, language

108 minutes

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