The Wolfman Review (2 of 5)

I read that Director Mark Romanek quit ‘The Wolfman’ citing the fact that he couldn’t make a movie on a reportedly $85-100 million dollar budget… Let me say that again: Director Mark Romanek quit ‘The Wolfman’ citing the fact that he couldn’t make a movie on a reportedly $85-100 million dollar budget. I have no response to that really…. What? You can’t make a movie with just ONE monster in it on a budget of $85-100 million dollars….. $85-100 million dollars. What? I’m sorry. I’m just having a hard time grasping that…. I’ll go as far to throw this out there: If anybody out there wants to pony up 10 -$20,000, I promise you I’ll make a better film than this one. This moronic primadonna had 100 MILLION dollars American to work with and this is what he came up with… And think that was one of the many behind the scenes problems that were reported over the course of a couple of years that signaled that this was NOT going to be a werewolf movie, but a real dog.

The review. The review…. Okay: the story… Awful. They didn’t spend any of that budget on a story…. Lacks horror. Lacks humor. Lacks suspense. Lacks emotion. Lacks a  worthwhile story to tell.

There was  a half-assed attempt to hint at a gothic love story, which was just that: half-assed. They just couldn’t seem to figure out  what to do with a story about a wolfman. They borrowed a good bit from the original, from the ‘Talbot’ name, the gypsy, the rhyme at the beginning and end of the film, the wolf head cane, etc; but they didn’t work any of those elements into the context of a workable story.

Not from the new Wolfman movie...

The FX were a combo of  old school makeup FX and CGI. The biggest flaw in the film was adhering to a large degree to the look of the old films.  I love old horror movies. I love just about anything with Lon Chaney, Lon Jr., Boris Karloff, etc. Love movies like London After Midnight, Nosferatu, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari and of course The Wolfman. The FX in those movies are top notch for the period of time in which they were made. But the Lon Chaney Jr version of the Wolfman was a guy running around with some furry appliances on his face and hands and some fake teeth…

Nowadays that just doesn’t cut the mustard… At least not on 100 million dollar budgeted movies… Really, the end result of the monster’s design resembled a man sized stuffed animal. Something about the big puppy dog nose that they tried to retain from Lon Chaney Jr’s Wolfman, just looked like something you’d see on a well made kids’ TV movie (maybe on Nickelodean or Diusney channel).

Not from the new Wolfman movie...

What’s really strange to me, is that the ‘homage paid’ to the werewolf design seemed to have a closer resemblance to Oliver Reed’s  werewolf in The Curse Of the Werewolf.

On the plus side ( and there was a lot that this movie had going for it): A pretty good cast for a mainstream update of one of the ‘big 3’ Universal Studios monster flicks… Anthony Hopkins, Benicio Del Toro,Hugo Weaving (and Emily Blunt, I guess)…. These aren’t B Movie actors.

I generally haven’t been a fan of Del Toro’s movies, but I think he’s a decent actor. He’s believable, but this story wasn’t. he could’ve asked for a better wig to wear, as well.

I have yet to see Emily Blunt in a GOOD film. I’m sure she can act, just given the parts in major movies that she keeps landing. In The Wolfman she is mainly given the task of looking forlorn and giving long melancholy gazes without speaking. If anyone plays a drinking game with this one where the time you take a drink is when Blunt cries, is on the verge of tears or her lip quivers, they  will get smashed fairly early on in the movie. Apparently Blunt was hired for this film role because of her mastery of the lip quiver.

Hugo Weaving genuinely appeared to be trying to do his best. Most of the time he was standing surrounded by ‘townsfolk’ and speaking orders that were meaningless to the plot or what was happening onscreen. ” You! Go that way! You! Check downtown! We may be looking for a killer downtown somewhere! You! Call my agent! Tell him he’s fired! This movie is a dog! I was in the Matrix and the Lord of The Rings Trilogy! What the hell am I doing in this overbudgeted suckfest of a film? “…. That wasn’t actual dialogue in the film.

Hopkins on the other hand is beginning to resemble Sam Jackson in his lack of shame. Just send him a big wad of cash and he’ll be in anything. You will get top notch Hopkins acting, though. I could swear Sam Jackson kept turning to the camera and winking at me when I watched ‘The Spirit’, chuckling  ” and you paid to watch this crap! Ha ha! Gotcherwallet!” I swear he said that. Anyway… Hopkins was Hopkins making really awful dialogue sound pretty good within the confines of worthless schlock.

The sets were impressive. You can see a lot of the movie’s budget in the sets… The CGI generated sky/ overcast backgrounds were not nearly as impressive as the real shots of gothic mansions and locations.

The costumes were rather well done, although it seemed that the clothes that these actors were wearing were just that: costumes… They looked like they were getting ready for a photo shoot in Vanity Fair instead of actually making a movie.

I’ve never been a gorehound for the sake of gore… I like good movies. If they have gore in them, I don’t care as long as the movie’s good (John Carpenter’s The Thing is a great example…. GREAT FILM!). There was a good bit of CGI gore, but in this case, it wasn’t interesting since they were only trying to distract you, the viewer, from the crap story. And most of it wasn’t done that well, anyway. I laughed out loud at several inappropriate moments, but that falls on the director, not me.Make a good film and I’ll emote at the appropriate times.

One big thing that you usually get in a good werewolf movie: the transformation. This one was decent, but still pales in comparison to those in American Werewolf In London and The Howling.

And that’s all I care to say about this one. I give it a very disappointed (and bored) 1.5 out of 5 whatevers…. Yep. That’s all I have to say.

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3 Responses to “The Wolfman Review (2 of 5)”

  1. Crash! Landen Says:

    I try to warn people when I can….

  2. Tasha Dilbert-Bennett Says:

    Hey, Im new at this blog thing but I was just reading your review of The wolf man and you are so right. I guess you could say that the actors did a pretty decent job, but the video effects etc just sucked.

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