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Brotherhood of the Wolf: Director's Cut


None September 4th, 2008

brotherhoodofthewolf

2001

Here's proof that the French can be just as crazy as other countries when it comes to cinema. "Brotherhood of the Wolf" isn't sure "” purposely, I believe "” if it wants to be a period costume drama, a Gothic horror film or an Asian-style action extravaganza. To its credit, it works as all three.

In 1765, rural France is terrorized by a beast that kills only women and children. After years of desperate, unsuccessful hunts to bring down the creature, the king calls for scientist Fronsac (Samuel Le Bihan) and his ax-wielding Iroquois pal (Mark Dacascos).

The two quickly bust out their kung fu as they do battle with both the giant wolf and bad guys within the village. Throw in a religious cult, a one-armed man and a magical prostitute (Monica Bellucci), and you've got something you've never quite seen before. It's not your typical "foreign film," and one I've long admired for its genre-mashing ambition and intelligence.

Although he could have trimmed about half an hour from his epic tale (and I couldn't determine where the restored nine minutes for this double-disc cut lie), director Christophe Gans ("Silent Hill") skillfully guides this difficult material to full fruition, utilizing gorgeous visuals. A feature-length on-the-set documentary detail a stressed-out Gans' troubles with the elements and everything else, while another is more of your standard making-of.

"”Rod Lott

 
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