Let’s just start off by saying that I am NOT, I repeat, NOT talking about the 1941 version with Lon Chaney Jr. and Claude Rains. That one cannot be touched and the only time you’d ever hear me bad mouth it in any way is if I was being delirious. Here, I am talking about the 2010 modernized version with Benicio Del Toro and Anthony Hopkins. As a homage to Chaney Jr., this film does a pretty good job despite its flaws. It also helps that Del Toro absolutely resembled Chaney Jr. to a T. It was as if he was made for the role (look at his face, it just screams wolf).
Even though this is the weekly Bad Movie Blues post, I will admit that this movie wasn’t entirely terrible. It just didn’t live up to my expectations that the 1941 version had already instilled. There was definitely some effort there but overall, it’s a sleeper with some gore sprinkled here and there. Let’s also be honest here; seeing Del Toro’s entire transformation into the badass werewolf almost made up for the first hour of bore.
The Wolfman (2010) Credit: Scifinow
One of the great parts about this version was that filmmakers attempted to keep as much authenticity to the original as possible while still adding 2010’s flair. Much of the old story line was there but I felt like more could’ve been done with it. During the first half, it felt more like a visual summary of the original than a modern rendition just for the sake of background information to clarify the rest of the plot. It’s understandable though because they wanted to have this version be taken just as seriously as the first without blemishing the classic reputation. With modern train-wreck horrors like Sharknado and Werewolf Bitches From Outer Space, I think they made the right choice by keeping safe and subtle, even if the excitement could’ve been amped up a bit.
The movie also didn’t seem to flow smoothly and felt choppy by the end. It was as if a lot of content had been cut out and filmmakers were trying to tie up the ends quickly because they spent too much time trying to find the perfect balance between character-building scenes and the attack ones. Because the first hour or so spent so much time trying to give context as to what was actually going on, not enough time was spent on a better ending that would make the movie more noticeable against its predecessor.
I will admit that seeing the werewolf violence was one of the main things I was looking forward to and this version didn’t disappoint. Besides the blood and guts, there is nothing truly memorable with this one. Del Toro, while being Chaney Jr.’s reincarnation, is not intimidating whatsoever as a man-wolf hybrid and it’s quite odd seeing Hannibal Lecter grow fangs and matted back hair. I will still watch The Wolfman occasionally when it’s on television but it’s definitely not something to invest a lot of time in. I am more than pleased to say that this is not as bad as Twilight but as far as werewolf films go, this is just not one of the best in my book.