Benicio Del Toro stars as Lawrence Talbot, The Wolfman, in this remake of the 1941 classic originally starring Lon Chaney Jr.
Lawrence, a famous stage actor in America, returns to the family estate (Blackmoor) in England at the behest of his brother’s fiancée, Gwen Conliffe (Emily Blunt), to help look for his missing brother only to learn from his father, Sir John (Anthony Hopkins), his brother has been found brutally murdered.
Gwen makes a request to Lawrence to help find the person responsible for her fiancée’s death, but the locals believe what they are looking for is not a person, but a man-beast the gypsies call a werewolf.
Lawrence gets help looking for his brother’s killer from Scotland Yard’s Inspector Abberline (Hugo Weaving), whose name Lawrence recognizes as one of the inspectors involved in the search for Jack the Ripper. Lawrence doesn’t have much faith in the inspector’s ability, though, because of his failed attempts to catch “The Ripper.”
During the hunt for his brother’s killer, Lawrence encounters the wolf man and survives an attack from the beast only to discover his fate and tribulations will be worse than death itself. But one person believes he can be saved — his late brother’s fiancée — Gwen, who has fallen for Lawrence. While Lawrence tries to keep his “affliction” secret, Inspector Abberline closes in on the killer — someone very close to Lawrence. What can you say about remakes? I really looked forward to the movie, but was disappointed. I thought the performances were great and Benicio did a better than average job in the lead role, although encumbered with less than stellar makeup or special effects. All in all, the movie didn’t live up to the hype. In the beginning, the movie had a few startling moments, but those moments dwindled as the movie progressed. A clear full-frontal view of the wolfman was introduced too soon, which I think lessened the impact of startling the viewer and the wolfman makeup was too reminiscent of another wolfman movie, Teen Wolf, which was a comedy. I have seen better makeup during Halloween. It’s an OK movie, but only if you are into the genre. Next week’s review: Shutter Island starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Ruffalo, Ben Kingsley, Michelle Williams, Patricia Clarkson and Max Von Sydow. If you see this movie, we want to hear your comments on it. E-mail your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org and you might just see them in the Reader’s Take portion of From Reel to Rental. You can also post comments on The Bayonet Facebook page in the Discussion Board section.