HORROR; 1hr 43min
STARRING: Benicio Del Toro, Anthony Hopkins, Emily Blunt, Hugo Weaving
I spy: from left, Del Toro and Hopkins
Drowning in spooky atmospherics with its palette of charcoal and blood, The Wolfman is a shameless drama-queen horror show, inspired by the 1941 Lon Chaney Jr classic. Director Joe Johnston (Hidalgo) wastes no time with the history of tormented Lawrence Talbot (Del Toro), whose life is shattered in childhood by his mother’s death and as an adult by his brother’s grisly demise in the jaws of a werewolf.
When, after decades of absence, Lawrence returns to his decrepit English ancestral home in 1891, he too is attacked. He survives, but at what a cost! As the paranoid villagers are churlishly aware, Lawrence is now fated to howl at the full moon and eat people, and neither his standoffish father (Hopkins), his late brother’s moony-eyed fiancée (Blunt) nor the detective on the people-eating case (Weaving) can save him from himself. Which couldn’t be more corny, hammy and/or cheesy, and that’s A-OK by me. Upping the primeval ante, Rick Baker’s hairy effects are fabulous and Del Toro brings an artist’s anguish to a frightful scene: no small feat when the fur starts to fly.