• Name: Greener Grass
• Year: 2019
• Country: USA
• Director: Jocelyn DeBoer, Dawn Luebbe
• Main cast: Jocelyn DeBoer, Dawn Luebbe, Beck Bennett
• Runtime: 95 minutes
• Production company: Gulp Splash Productions, Vanishing Angle
Every time I have been asked about this movie Greener Grass (2019) I like to say it is like the female response to The Greasy Strangler (2016). In fact, that is not very accurate. Both movies are very different per se, but they still have two big things in common. The first one is a personal appreciation and it shouldn’t be taken as a big fact, but I found myself confronting both pictures at the Sitges Film Festival, with 3 years of difference within one screening and the other, and secondly because the feeling I got while watching both movies was the same. The feeling of “what the fuck am I watching?”. To me, The Greasy Strangler (2016) became an instant classic, a movie that in these 3 years I have rewatched a good handful of times again to the point that I still quote parts of the movie in my normal everyday life. And I feel the impact Greener Grass (2019) had on me will end up being, if not the same, very close to that.
I will set you, my beloved reader, into situation. It was the last day of the Sitges Film Festival, after 10 days of movies non-stop, writing so many articles and reviews, what is the film festival life. A life I enjoy, but it is also very exhausting. So I found myself in the last screening of the year for me in Sitges, a film marathon of 4 titles that started at 1 am, after the whole day of movies. My brain needed something calm, it wasn’t ready for another battle. And the second title in that marathon screening was Greener Grass (2019). It started as “ok, this is weird, but it’s nice. I like it”. But things were getting dumber and dumber, so I was like “Ummm… is this going to stay like this the whole movie? What is this?”. In the end, I surrendered. My attitude was “yes, yes, give me more, give me more!!”.
Greener Grass (2019) is a comedy, and that’s it. Not a horror comedy, not a creepy comedy, not a supernatural comedy. It is a voracious critic to the American accommodated society, those families living in their pretty houses in remote residential neighborhoods, away from reality, everything and everybody, only keeping contact with their weird community members. Everybody knows everybody, there are no secrets, and sometimes friendships can be fake when envy and competition enter in scene. All of these factors could be the source for a story full of sordid crimes, bloodthirsty family mothers hiding the dead body of their oldtimer neighbor in their backyard, or teenage kids going on a murderous rampage as we have seen in many other movies. But no, brace yourself, here we are in front of a surreal and dumb humor masterpiece.
Jocelyn DeBoer and Dawn Luebbe write, direct and star in Greener Grass (2019), where they play two family mothers, best friends but with the problems that routine and dullness can bring to any human being. They both debut directing a feature film after the awards winner short film The Arrival (2017), which again they wrote, directed and starred, and where they already laid the foundations of her style heavy in surreal, irony and absurdity. Only in Greener Grass (2019) they go further, way further, in this imaginary world of theirs where the most stupid thing is the daily stuff.
With Greener Grass (2019) first I was completely out of place, but as soon as I understood their game I felt very comfortable and warm in their hands. I laughed hard, I felt dumbfounded and speechless, but, overall, I was happy and satisfied that I had the chance to witness such a movie. Very detailed in the facture, full of bright sugar-coated colors, a filmmaking style far from the typical comedy, closer to traditional drama movies, which makes the shock with the surreal even stronger, and with astonishing acting performances, Greener Grass (2019) is a gem, a one of a kind. I can assume the movie is not for everybody, the world probably is not predisposed to such ultimate idiocy, but if your mind is open for unconditional laughs, no matter what, this could be your movie. I still don’t understand what a movie like this was doing at Sitges Film Festival, a horror and fantasy genre festival, but I’m extremely glad that they booked it.
IMDB URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt7422822
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