A wounded war vet moves to a place where people are dying from mysterious circumstances.
Pretty straight forward right? Right. This is actually a solid little indie werewolf movie, though there are some pretty silly moments and characters throughout and the story does suffer a little bit from clarity issues. That said, it’s not terrible and it’s pretty fun to watch. I will say that i went in feeling pretty skeptical, werewolf movies have become one of those things that I’m not seeing any new ground breaking with. The same with vampire movies. Realistically the most groundbreaking of either type of movies has been What We Do In The Shadows.
This isn’t really anything new, but it is a pretty satisfying and watchable movie. Though, there is a pretty cool werewolf transformation scene in this. Which, at this point in the werewolf movie experience, is all you can ask for. I mean, if a huge piece of shit like Hemlock Grove can get huge props, and be sold to me as “OH MAN YOU HAVE TO WATCH IT. THE WEREWOLF SCENE IS SO GOOD”, then that appears to be the only innovation that needs to be made anymore.
The main character, Ambrose, is played by the definitely-not-blind Nick Damici, and is bordering on DareDevil levels of blind-superpowers. He’s kind of impossibly able to take care of himself. I’m not saying that those who are blind can’t be independent. I’m really not, it’s just the level of self-sustainability in this elderly, retired war vet, character is a bit crazy. Especially since it plays on that “blindness makes your other sense more active” thing, which is total bullshit. Hearing him say to so many people “I can smell you” got a bit tiring, especially since Ambrose isn’t a werewolf at all.
There’s also a great, albeit it criminally small, performance from Tom Noonan (House Of The Devil), and that was one of the biggest things that kept me watching.
It’s by no means a bad movie, and I won’t say that at all. It’s a pretty fun little werewolf movie, with a pretty good transformation. The thing is, it’s just nothing new. I feel like, at this point, if you’re going to make a werewolf movie or a vampire movie, then it’s time to do something different with the genre. The most cutting edge werewolf flick in the last 14 years, in my opinion, was Ginger Snaps. (One way to make this more interesting might have been to have this blind character be bitten by a werewolf, and become a werewolf… it’s small but it’s something.)
So, overall this one sort of runs right down the middle. Director Adrian Garcia Bogliano also directed Here Comes The Devil, which I’ve seen mixed reviews for and haven’t actually sat down and watched myself, and writer Eric Stolze hasn’t written anything I’ve heard of, so I won’t make any assumptions about their abilities. I’d just like to see something a bit more interesting from the both of them.
It’s not bad, it’s just not anything we haven’t seen before. Check out Ginger Snaps, or Dog Soldiers, or Trick ‘R Trerat if you’re looking for a werewolf fix and haven’t seen those ones yet. Also, if you’re not a big fan of pets dying in movies, this isn’t the movie for you.
FINAL GRADE: C+