A no-budget Troma-influenced horror comedy, this predates the similar ZOMBEAVERS and gets a laugh at the very start thanks to the now-obligatory “Based on true events” disclaimer. The opening scene is a fun send up of ill-fated-make-out-sessions-in-the-woods scenes, as a young couple get horny (“Your male obsession with breasts is turning me on – I’m going to show you my boobs!”) and get killed (“Oh my god, It’s eating my brain!”).
At Raccoon Creek, a heat wave and an invasion of boozing students coincide with a plague of exceptionally vicious, rabid raccoons. They pass on their sickness to a bunch of intentionally stereotyped campers, including buxom babes, virgin losers, rednecks and Arabs. Although it relies on mugging actors playing multiple roles via deliberately naff facial hair, false moustaches and wigs, COONS is endearingly self-conscious rather than irritating. The puppet monsters are endearing, and there are enough musical numbers, fart jokes, flippant death scenes and cute homages to JAWS to ensure few longeurs. Some of the jokes are groaners (a news reporter named Dick Weener), while others – like a lo-fi APOCALYPSE NOW parody – work surprisingly well. The best laugh comes at the very end: a credit for “Dame Judi Stench” as the Momma raccoon.
Review by Steven West