When the moon is full, the legend comes to life.
Lawrence Talbot (Del Toro) returns from a theatrical tour of London to his family estate to find his brother has disappeared. With the aid of his eccentric father, Sir John (Hopkins), Talbot hunts for his brother and quickly encounters a fearsome werewolf. Bitten by the beast, Talbot evades the attentions of the sinister Inspector Aberline (Weaving) and begins to learn the horrifying truth about himself and his family.
The Wolfman is both a fond homage to the 1941 horror classic that inspired it, and a new approach to the werewolf myth. Director Joe Johnston (Jumanji) mixes traditional slow-burn horror and furiously fast action set pieces, with several barrels of gore thrown in. The Wolfman himself is created with a combination of CGI and prosthetic fur, and while the transformation isn’t always convincing, Del Toro’s performance as both the man and the monster is tortured and brutal in equal measure. The movie is heady with atmosphere: the dark and forbidding woods that the Wolfman calls home are permanently enshrouded in mist and shadows.
Johnston’s The Wolfman is not without its faults. The story is a little fractured, and the lead actors rather restrained for bloodthirsty beasts - but the sheer gothic style of the movie and the wry, cynical Inspector Aberline more than cover the cracks. The Wolfman is a deliciously moody horror film, and a worthy addition to the ranks of great movie monsters.
Screenings of this film:
|2009/2010 Summer Term – (35mm)|