The Wolfman

Anthony Hopkins, Benicio Del Toro, Emily Blunt, Hugo Weaving, Art Malik & Geraldine Chaplin star in The Wolfman, a remake of the 1941 horror classic of the same name, with lots of changes. Lawrence Talbot (Del Toro) returns to his hometown of Blackmoor on the death of his brother Ben. It was Ben’s fiance Gwen (Blunt) who sends him a letter informing about Ben’s disappearance. We see at the beginning of the movie that Ben is mauled to death by a creature that looks part man and part wolf.

Lawrence meets Gwen and his estranged father Sir John (Hopkins) and is horrified to see the remains of his brother. Among the belongings are a gold medallion which leads him to a group of gypsies who love outside Blackmoor. While there, local townspeople force the gypsies to hand over a dancing bear who they suspect to be the Ben’s killer. Just the the werewolf attacks and kills many of the people at the camp. Lawrence gets his shotgun to kill the werewolf and runs after a boy who takes off into the woods alone. Lawrence saves the boy but is attacked by the werewolf and is bitten on the neck. The rest of the people chase the lycan away and Lawrence is taken to be tended to.

Gwen returns to Talbot Hall to nurse Lawrence back to health. He has several fearful dreams but after a few weeks appears to have completely healed. Lawrence is also investigated by Inspector Aberline (Weaving) and brings up Lawrence’s tortured past of being in an asylum as a child. One evening after Gwen returns back to London, Lawrence follows his father Sir John into a crypt kept in memory of his wife, Lawrence’s mother. Lawrence has memories of his mother committing suicide by silting her throat. He finds his father in the catacombs beneath the crypt, in a shrine to his dead mother, a shrine that includes a chair specially fitted with restraints. Sir John tells Lawrence that he has been “dead” for years, and then locks himself in the room alone. As Lawrence tries to leave, he turns into the Wolfman. Rampaging through the woods, he kills several townspeople who had created a trap in hopes of catching the monster. The next day, Sir John leads Aberline and the local police to where a dazed, bloody human Lawrence is hiding.

Lawrence is taken to the same asylum where he was incarcerated as a child and put electro-sock & ice water therapy. A visit from Sir John reveals the truth behind the creature – Sir John was bit by a young werewolf while in India and he killed his wife on a full moon night. As Lawrence had seen the death, he was subjected to treatment in an asylum and forgot the details of the incident. Sir John killed Ben when he found out that Ben was planning on moving away from their house in Blackmoor after his marriage to Gwen, who it seems had also won the admiration of Sir John. In a fit of rage he lost control and let loose on the countryside and attacked his own son. Later in an observation room, while Aberline watches, Lawrence changes into a werewolf on a full moon night and kills a few people and escapes. He meets up with Gwen and they share a kiss. He leaves to confront his father, while Gwen researches lycans.

She is led to the gypsy woman who tells her that the only release from the lycan curse is death. Gwen hurries to Blackmoor as Sir John & Lawrence, changed into werewolves, fight each other to the death. Lawrence kills off his father by kicking him into the fire and then beheading him. Aberline and the cops attempt to kill the werewolf but Gwen interferes and Aberline is bitten. A chase into the woods, leaves Gwen at the edge of cliff and she pleads to the werewolf. He hesitates for a bit and he recognizes Gwen but as the approaching mob startle the werewolf, Gwen shoots him with a silver bullet. Lawrence transforms back to his human form and thanks Gwen as he breathes his last, lying in her arms. As the movie ends, the camera pans back to a wounded Alberline, the screen goes blank and we hear the howl of a werewolf.

It’s an ok movie, although why we needed another period movie about werewolves is beyond me. Updating the effects of a man changing into a werewolf – ok I did like that and there are errie parts to the movie. But I’m not surprised that it flopped and hasn’t yet broken even. I’d give it a 5 outta 10.

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