12.30.2012

#273 -- Medium Raw: Night of the Wolf (2010)

Director: Andrew Cymek
Rating: 3 / 5

Synopsis from IMDB:
Capturing the sadistic serial killer "The Wolf" was just the beginning for rookie cop Johnny Morgan. As he escorts the monster to his new home in the dark underground halls of Parker's Asylum, bedlam ensues and Johnny along with a handful of civilians become players in a night of survival against the world's most terrifying inmates.

So, I didn't really know what to expect from that synopsis. I read it a long time ago when I found the movie on Netflix, and since it didn't really give me much, I just overlooked it. My boyfriend wanted to watch it today, and all he told me was that it was about "some serial killer who kills little kids." I really didn't know what I was getting into. I didn't know that it was a re-imagining of the Red Riding Hood story. So, there's a guy who wears a wolf suit who likes to kill little girls. There's even a little girl in the movie who wears a red jacket. At each murder scene, a message was found that said "Are you the woodcutter?" If you, like me, don't remember the original story to begin with, the woodcutter was the guy who cut open the wolf's belly in order to save Red and her grandmother. So I guess the killer was daring someone to catch him.

When The Wolf was captured, he was sent to the aforementioned Parker's Asylum where he would be treated, along with a whole bunch of other crazy folks. I must mention that Parker's treatment methods were a tad bit unorthodox. He used drowning chambers (cages that descended into pools) and shock collars, to name a few. In the end, you'll learn that the man they thought was The Wolf, was only the true killers little apprentice, and the real Wolf was much worse. He wore a big wolf suit, which was truly a work of genius, if you ask me. It was fucking amazing. It was like a suit of armor, it had the Wolverine claws, and a bear trap like jaw that could snap shut on his victims.

One night there was a power outage, which caused the computers to malfunction and unlock all of the cell doors. The inmates were unleashed, and their shock collars were no longer very effective. So the staff, some police men (Christian and writer/director/star Andrew Cymek), and the little girl I mentioned earlier, were in the for the night of their lives.



I enjoyed the filming on this one. The scenes were set in a sort of eerie glow, which made everything look nice. The inmate that I was most interested in, Benjamin Jacobs, was bathed in shadows for the majority of the movie, making him quite mysterious. All I knew of him to begin with was his deep, growly voice. Later I realized that he was enraged by the color red, that he was inhumanly strong, and...there was no way that guy was human. He reminded me of a mixture of Frankenstein's Monster and The Hulk--which was super cool. I wish he had gotten a lot more screen time; or better yet, the whole movie should have been about him. Put him in the wolf suit and let him loose. Now that would have been scary. Anyways...The acting was pretty decent, and included a couple of wrestlers (Christian and Test), which I always enjoy. Christian's fate wasn't too pretty, but I did enjoy him here.

FrankenHulk!


While there were a lot of things I liked about the movie, there were a few things that I had problems with. One, the pacing was terribly slow. For the most part, it was just about the doctors' interactions with the patients, which is interesting enough, but it hardly qualifies as horror movie material. Once the actual killing started, it seemed like more than half of the movie had gone by already. I didn't pay attention to the times, but it definitely felt drawn out. Up until that point, it wasn't much more than background noise.

I can't really call it disappointing, since I didn't know what to expect in the first place, but I do feel that it could have been better. It wasn't a complete let down, though. It was worth watching just to see FrankenHulk.

Rating

Cinematography - 8 points. I liked the lighting and that eerie glow I mentioned earlier. It didn't have a huge budget, but it wasn't a ten-cent movie either. There were certainly some talented people behind it, and it looked good.

Storyline - 7 points. The premise isn't something I'm unfamiliar with. We've all seen tons of movies involving asylums, and escaped inmates running amok. I liked the Red Riding Hood thing too, but the pacing was far too slow.

Gore - 5 points. There wasn't a whole lot of it, but where it was present, it was pretty good. Most of the good scenes involved kills with the Wolverine claws, which were pretty good. But with a suit like that, I would have expected more gruesome kills, and a whole lot more blood. They had something that great, which could have set up some really awesome kills, but they just didn't go with it.

Scariness - 3 points. It wasn't really scary at all, or even creepy. It had some suspenseful moments, but it never got my heart pumping.

Characters - 9 points. I really--and I mean really--enjoyed the crazy inmates. There was a woman named Mabel who was the stereotypical old-fashioned black lady. She knew everything there was to know about cooking a good meal, the only catch was that she liked to eat people (that's how Christian was killed). There was FrankenHulk, who was wonderful. There was an old, naked guy in a Santa hat who had a foot fetish; he liked to cut off peoples' toes and wear them on a necklace. And then there was, of course, The Wolf. Those characters were great. I didn't care much for the protagonists, but the crazies were wonderful.

T & A - 0 points. There was absolutely nothing in this department. There were a couple of kisses, but that was it.

Overall score - 32 / 60

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