DVD Review - "The Wolfman"

Upon learning of his brother's disappearance, Lawrence Talbot (Benicio Del Toro) returns to the home he left many years before. When he arrives, he finds the house in shambles with his father, Sir John Talbot (Anthony Hopkins), teetering on the edge of insanity. When his brother's body is discovered, Lawrence stays around, in part to comfort his brother's former fiance Gwen (Emily Blunt), and in part to determine how his brother died. The story around town is that the death was at the hands of the Wolfman, a local legend. Soon Lawrence is himself attacked by the creature, setting up a brutal showdown with the demons of his past.

At one point, "Wolfman" was so respected as to garner award anticipation. Quite quickly, however, this attention waned as the movie was shifted all over the calendar until it finally settled into the Movie Dead Zone that is February. I held out a small measure of hope if for no other reason than the actors involved. I think Del Toro is an excellent talent who usually delivers and while Hopkins hasn't done anything of value in years (and years and years), I still want to believe he's got something left in the tank.

Unfortunately, "Wolfman" is a train wreck. The story is mediocre at best and seriously choppy throughout. There is little to no character development and the special effects are of low rent video game quality. Del Toro holds up his end of the bargain but he is left completely and totally alone on the acting front lines. Emily Blunt, whom I have a giant crush on, just doesn't get much of a chance to do anything as her part is basically pointless. And then there's Hopkins. Oh, Anthony Hopkins, how I miss you. Hopkins gives one of the most mailed-in performances I have ever seen. He is completely uninspired and uninterested in his role, the movie, and maybe even breathing. I equate the last 10 years of Hopkins' career to that of Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis in that both were GREAT in their day but now it's unclear if either is still alive. It's like Hopkins died years ago but his family, in need of some quick cash, has reanimated his body and run a scam on the whole of Hollywood, continuing to sign his name to awful movies. Del Toro and the occasional glimpse of inspired FX keep "Wolfman" from being a total loss but it's not far off.

Grade: D