The Wolfman—Movie

The Wolfman, directed by Joe Johnston with screenplay by Andrew Kevin Walker and David Self, is one scary, gory, entertaining hoot or should I say “howl.”

The Wolfman, a revisiting of the classic 1941 Curt Siodmak movie screenplay, The Wolf Man, stars Anthony Hopkins as Sir John Talbot, Benicio Del Toro as his son Lawrence (his lack of English accent is explained away as the result of being sent to America as a young boy), Emily Blunt as Gwen Conliffe, the fiancé of Lawrence’s late brother Ben who’s been killed under mysterious circumstances and Hugo Weaving as Abberline, the Inspector hunting down the unknown killer.

Anthony Hopkins immediately classes up any movie in which he participates and he makes the most of every bit of screen time he has, but not in a cheesy, over the top way. If you’re expecting a Hannibal Lecter Hopkins, you will be disappointed, but his restrained performance helps the movie a great deal. Academy Award winner Benicio Del Toro also treats his part seriously. He’s very convincing as a man confronting demons from his past, trying to take charge of his present and future. Emily Blunt makes the most of the little screen time she has, but her scenes with Benicio Del Toro are charged with chemistry.

Aside from the two male leads, the real stars of this movie are the English moors and the amazing special effect makeup created by Rick Baker and his team. Together they set the eery tone for The Wolfman.

For sheer imagination, nothing beats the original Wolf Man. The black and white imagery and the performance of Maria Ouspenskaya as the gypsy who explains the curse of the werewolf just can’t be beat.  But The Wolfman, judged on its own merits, makes for a highly entertaining afternoon at the movies.

3 nuggets out of 4

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