Sunday, 28 June 2009

Never Cry Werewolf

I should stop watching TV on Sunday mornings.

When Jared moves in next door, Kyle befriends him right away but his older sister Loren is less taken with the man. In fact, she thinks he's kind of strange. Loren takes to spying on him and she soon concludes that he's a werewolf. No one believes her, of course, and when she confronts Jared he tells her that she's the reincarnation of his dead wife and they're meant to be together. Loren decides she has to kill Jared and enlists Steve to help her. After an unfortunate series of events, Loren and Steve are joined by Kevin Sorbo in their mission to rid the town of Jared.

I've said it before, I don't watch a lot of werewolf movies, so I don't know if this film is a ripoff of another werewolf movie, but I can tell you it sort of feels a bit like Dracula. It's that whole reincarnated loved-one business. I'm also unfamiliar with the werewolf mythos, but I've always assumed that werewolves a) don't choose to become werewolves, and b) only change at the full moon. Jared breaks the mold, in first choosing to be werewolf, and then in chagning at will with the help of a strip of human flesh torn from a man who hanged himself during a full moon.

In addition to the strange, new, and jarring laws for werewolves, Jared and Loren's age difference makes the whole movie feel vaguely inappropriate. A gap of at least 15 years separates the two, which isn't the problem per se, really it's more the way in which the filmmakers deal with it. Jared aggressively pursues Loren, uses overt sexual metaphores to express his feelings, and forces her to strip. Loren dreams of kissing Jared, which is both innocent and confusing because she's not attracted to him, but when she arrives at Jared's house to kill him, she's dressed in a sports bra and jeans. There's no subtlety to Jared's character which has the unfortunate effect of turning him into a pervert. And Loren has absolutely no character at all, which just makes it all the more confusing when she appears as a black-clad, overly sexualized demon hunter at the end of the film. Where Jared more covert, and were Loren to experience a sexual awakening, then maybe this film could have gone somewhere. As it is, Jared is a sexual predator who preys on teenaged girls.

And then there's Kevin Sorbo. He plays washed-up TV star Redd Tucker. In much the same way that Jared and Loren had the potential to be star-crossed lovers, Kevin Sorbo could have stood to represent the loss of innocence that comes with adulthood. When Loren asks for his help, Kevin Sorbo admits to being a fraud and is of no use to her. So what could have been a coming-of-age tale of kid ingenuity and female empowerment is instead just a film about a girl who kills a werewolf.

1 comment:

Vardulon said...

What, it didn't come up in your review that this was a total rip-off of Fright Night?