The more I’ve seen of the film, the more I’m crossing my fingers (even the disturbingly broken ones) that Universal has pulled off a stylish and freaky remake of “The Wolfman.” Benecio Del Toro approached this as a passion project, and I love that it’s a no-joke Monster Kid wearing Rick Baker’s make-up in this one. I still wish I could have seen what Mark Romanek would have done with the material, but considering when Joe Johnston stepped into the process, this sort of is Romanek’s film. He made a lot of the big choices that will influence what you see onscreen a week from Friday.
Toshi’s become a big fan of the original Universal “The Wolfman” in the last few months. It started when his godfather gave him a series of monster books, each one highlighting a different classic monster. He’s had me reading them to him at bedtime almost non-stop, and he’s particularly drawn to the plight of “Lorren Tablet,” as played by Lon Chaney Jr. I get it. There’s something heartbreaking about a monster who doesn’t want to be a monster, and if this new film gets that part of it right, that’ll go a long way towards making the film work. Lawrence Talbot always resonated for me as a kid, and it’s interesting to see that my little budding film nerd feels the same way. It’ll be a looooooong time before he ever lays eyes on this new film, of course, since it’s an R-rated take on the material, but for now, he’s happy to watch the final fight from “Frankenstein Meets The Wolfman” over and over, cheering as he does so.
In the meantime, we’ve got seven new clips from the film to hold you over. Yeah, that’s right. I said seven. That’s a big chunk of movie to check out, and Universal’s pulling out all the stops to see if they can be the film to finally push “Avatar” off its number one perch. I have no idea what order these fall in the film chronologically, but let’s start with the clips that mainly emphasize Lawrence Talbot (Del Toro) in his human form.
First, there’s this quiet moment in which he warns Gwen (Emily Blunt) that she needs to leave for her own safety:
Next, we see Lawrence and his father Sir John Talbot (Anthony Hopkins) the morning after a rampage, as Lawrence realizes what’s occurred:
Now, maybe it’s just me, but I have a feeling making out with Emily Blunt would make me more likely to turn into a big Tex Avery-style wolf, not less likely:
In this clip, some villagers come a-calling, and Sir John steps in to help his son:
Okay, you ready for some monster footage? This is, after all, a monster movie. So first, let’s see a bit of the transformation. And by a bit, I really mean just a tease:
And then how about a wee bit of his London rampage?
Holy cow, that looked like a Wolfman!
Finally, let’s wrap it up with Emily Blunt, begging a gypsy woman for help, because this wouldn’t be a “Wolfman” movie if it didn’t have some gypsy women in it:
She’s beautiful, and she’s helpful. That Emily Blunt’s quite the catch.
Expect more coverage of the movie next week, including my review, and then you’ll be able to check it out for yourself when “The Wolfman” arrives in theaters on February 12th. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, because nothing says “I love you” like a silver bullet.
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