GRANDMOTHER’S HOUSE (1988) Reviews and overview

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‘She’ll spoil you to death!’

Grandmother’s House is a 1988 American horror thriller feature film directed by Peter Rader from a screenplay by Peter Jensen (Shadow of the Hawk storyline). It was produced by Greek filmmaker Nico Mastorakis (Darkroom; The Zero Boys; The Wind; Island of Death). It is also known as Grandma’s House.


Main cast:

Eric Foster (Darkroom; Death House), Kim Valentine (Raiders of the Lost Shark; Werewolf TV series)), Len Lesser (Frankenstein and the Werewolf Reborn!Ruby; Blood and Lace), Ida Lee and Brinke Stevens (Jonah Lives; Repligator; Teenage Exorcist).

Vinegar Syndrome is releasing Grandmother’s House as a Region Free Blu-ray + DVD combo on April 30, 2019. Special features:

  • Newly scanned & restored in 4k from its 35mm original camera negative
  • “The Mysterious Woman” – an interview with actress Brinke Stevens
  • “Back to Grandmother’s House” – an interview with director Peter Rader
  • “Slow n’ Steady” – an interview writer/cinematographer Peter Jensen
  • Archival ‘making-of’ featurette – which includes the original short concept film
  • 5.1 and stereo sound mixes
  • Still gallery
  • Original trailer
  • Reversible cover artwork
  • English SDH subtitles


Following the death of both their parents, siblings David and Lynn move to their grandparents’ house, which is set in a remote orchard in the American mid-west.


As soon as they arrive, David witnesses his grandparents moving what appears to be a body into the basement…


He also begins seeing a strange lady wearing period country clothes, who mysteriously appears and disappears at random. Later, the woman reveals herself and the siblings discover she has escaped from a local mental hospital. She chases them all over the house and grounds whilst brandishing a kitchen knife…



“An extended third-act chase sequence set around an orange grove is highly memorable, coming with a shock involving a steel pipe that startles just as it should … Grandmother’s House comes equipped with a final scene that surprises, dismays and unsettles—pretty good for a movie that went straight to video.” David Putnam, The Film File


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“This is a professionally put-together, well-produced film with good cinematography, editing and music, and with an accent placed on mystery and suspense over blood and violence. It’s quite odd though in how uneven the whole thing is.” The Bloody Pit of Horror


“The film has an atmosphere that is hard to shake. It moves with an almost hallucinatory slow-motion mood that seems to take place somewhere between a waking nightmare and a childhood tall-tale. (The influence of the child’s point-of-view horror classic The Night of the Hunter (1955) hangs unmistakably over the film).” Moria

“Loose ends abound and the story won’t hold up to any serious examination, but the pace is so quick that the cliches and flaws aren’t too obvious. Similar material is handled in Bob Balaban’s Parents, but this one’s not as crazed. More importantly, its suspenseful without being overly violent.”


Buy: |

“This is an uninspired mad-relative-terrorizes-the-family movie … The interminable climax features a lengthy chase during which plot revelations come mechanically tumbling out.” The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror



Choice dialogue:

Raymond: “If I had a sister like that, I’d boff her.”

Grandmother: “We’re gonna have to get out the chastity belt.”

Cast and characters:

  • Eric Foster as David
  • Kim Valentine as Lynn
  • Len Lesser as Grandfather
  • Ida Lee as Grandmother
  • Brinke Stevens as Woman
  • Michael Robinson as Kenny
  • Craig Yerman as Raymond
  • David Donham as Mr. Sackett
  • Joan-Carol Bensen as Mrs. Sackett
  • Angela O’Neill as Darlene
  • R.J. Walker as Sheriff
  • Furley Lumpkin as Deputy
  • Jeanette Jamron as Twin 1
  • Anitra Jamron as Twin 2
  • David Algeier as Minister

Filming locations:

Redlands, California

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