The Merits of Sin: The Demon Rat (1992) (Mexico)

Irina is a lovely young school teacher with one major problem that’s about to cause another, more life threatening problem. Roberto Cervantes is her scuzzy pony tailed husband. He wants a divorce and she wants her father’s company back. He slimed his way into getting his hands on it and through greed and corruption has managed to assist in poisoning the environment. He’s also illegally handling and then dumping plutonium because he’s an industrialist shit heel with no moral compass.

All natural smarm

There is a bit of light coming into Irina’s life and its name is Professor Axel. Axel kind of looks like what would’ve happened if Robert Downey Jr. never got off drugs and had the fashion sense of a cocaine addicted 80s pro football player who just got into BDSM.

The safe word is “learning”

Irina believes she has some rats in her house and asks Axel to come on over and help her kill the vermin. Being a biologist, Axel says he’ll help catch them alive so he can study them. The world has slipped into such a toxic smog covered hellscape that even the life of a sewer puppy is considered precious.

Robert Downer Jr

The rat traps don’t really work because it turns out this animal is much bigger than your usual rat. Our first glimpse of it is a hilarious giant prop obviously rolling around on wheels, clunkily avoiding detection. It kills Irina’s dog and starts fucking up her house. Axel comes over with his exterminator buddy and promises to catch this beast. The exterminator asks them to leave for awhile so he can use his “dangerous” methods to take care of everything. He doesn’t make it.

Tough but fair

The rat has now transformed from a scooting laugh factory to some rat-man like thing that resembles a chubby werewolf. Mutation is a bitch. Irina has confessed to Axel all her relationship woes and, after a student has pointed him to a giant mutant fly, Axel comes to believe her husband is a real bastard. He decides to help take him down so Irina can get her company back and the world can get a little less poisoned. It all climaxes with Irina trapped in her house with the rat monster and Roberto showing up to gloat and explain that it was all his needlessly complicated plan to get rid of her. Axel figures out his plot and races to the rescue just as an acid rain storm kicks up. Sure. Why not?

The lovers of Irina… in love!

Mexico’s genre cinema is usually a guaranteed blast and this premise sets up one hell of a trashy good time but unfortunately the focus goes towards the telenovela new romance and scheming husband storyline. We don’t get much rat monster and that’s a damn shame. It’s stupid enough to make you smile but there’s a lot of chit chat to make you long for the cheap ass rat monster to return. They can’t all be winners. 4/10


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