Wes Craven (Director) and Kevin Williamson (writer) were the brains behind the Scream films and in 2005 decided to try their hand at a the werewolf genre.
As you can imagine, as I am just spending the majority of my time waiting, there are precious few things that seem to bring joy into my bleak and miserable existence, but then again "going off on one" about something that has really gotten on my nerves is also quite theraputic. Seriously, try it. You could either write a review for this website or just randomly criticise something that has pissed you off.
Is Cursed going to break through my cynicism and remind me that Hollywood can still produce greatness like Dredd did??
To answer that question, let’s dive into this heap of crap, oops that gave away my opinion pretty quickly still let's crack on regardless...
Here is the gist...a brother and sister are forced to confront the fact that an animal that has attacked them after a car accident was actually a werewolf, and they are going to change unless they can track down the werewolf and kill it before they turn.
Ellie (Christina Ricci) and Jimmy (Jesse Eisenberg) hit an animal whilst driving, and collide with another car. They go to the aid of the girl in the other vehicle and as they try to help her she is dragged into the bushes and killed. The animal slashes at the pair cutting them both. It is later that Jimmy starts to believe that the animal they encountered was actually a werewolf, now naturally, initially no one believes him.
Jimmy and Ellie both start to develop new powers, and Jimmy uses his new found strength to beat three wrestlers at school something he does with ease making him more popular and gives one of the wrestlers the idea that he is gay. Not sure why rolling around on the ground with sweaty men in tight spandex could be seen as gay...oh wait now I understand.
Anyway, his skin also burns when he touches anything silver. Jimmy reads up on werewolf mythology and discovers that if he and his sister are to become normal again then they must kill the werewolf that attacked them.
The rest of Cursed follows Jimmy and Ellie as they try to figure out a means of curing themselves before they become werewolves (a fate worse than death apparently)
Okay, let’s get right down to it. Cursed is a deeply flawed film, and quite frankly the minds behind the Scream films should have been able to come up with something a little more original. Naturally, Ellie is obviously sceptical about her brother’s explanation for what is happening to them, but does start to believe what he is talking about as she develops strange new powers.
Before I go on let me give credit to the only plus of this film, the young cast, who struggle through the clichéd film whilst managing to keep a straight face. Former Dawson’s Creek star Joshua Jackson plays Ellie’s boyfriend Jake and Heroes’ Milo Ventimiglia provides some support as the gay bully Bo that Jessie beats in the wrestling match. They try hard but there is very little they can do with the boring script, half-assed direction and poor special effects.
All that are left are the numerous cons.
The werewolf is a CGI creation that does not look frightening or real. Gone are the days when the transformation of human into werewolf is an agonising process in which the unfortunate person begs for help (think American Werewolf in London). Sadly with them have gone the good times when werewolves were savage and dangerous creatures driven to hunt and kill because that is what it is their nature to do (again American Werewolf in London). Recent films like Dog Soldiers have helped to bring back the werewolves as savage animals but yet again the interfering hand of Twilight dips into that pool too and helps set werewolves back into the realms of pussy cats rather than dangerous creatures of the night.
In Cursed the person who transforms into a werewolf still has their own mind, acts on their own desires and can be goaded into making mistakes. But nothing robs a werewolf of its menace quite as much as the scene in which the werewolf gives Ellie the finger. A werewolf is supposed to rip a person limb from limb not make rude gestures from across the room. An animal transforming the body of a human being and going all feral is the whole point of a werewolf and when you take that away you beg the question of the point of having the antagonist as a werewolf when it could have just been a lunatic with a knife.
It also seems to be typical now for anyone in a film to go looking for information about vampires or werewolves and uncover exactly what they are looking for. Whilst researching werewolves Jimmy uncovers information that suggests the marks on a werewolf’s human hand can be joined to create a five pointed star, and when he looks on his hand he finds those exact marks and draws the star. It seems incredibly convenient that he is able to find exactly what he is looking for. What happened to shifting through pages of bullshit online before maybe finding something that might have some relevance, but just like in From Dusk Till Dawn in which every myth about vampires is true, the same is true in Cursed.
It is obvious that Wes Craven did not give a crap about this film, or making anything new or original. This seems to be basically one of those pay check films, the actors try but they can’t do much, and so we are left with a jumbled mess that makes very little sense.
It is also just so boring….
I love werewolf and vampire films, and even the worst films generally have at least one decent idea that makes them worth a watch. For example, I thought Club Vampire was bullshit but it at least had the idea that a vampire would build up a tolerance to the sun given enough time. That was pretty original. But here there is literally nothing that makes it entertaining, it is basically Dawson’s Creek meets a shit werewolf movie.
All in all Cursed is a poor addition to the werewolf genre, it has nothing original, or shows werewolves in a new light. The scene in which Jimmy’s dog turns into some kind of CGI dog crossed with a werewolf and Jimmy silences the neighbours’ dogs with a loud howl is laughable. If this had been a spoof it would have made a lot more sense and might even have been good but sadly this was not the case.
As a result my Thumb is pointing straight Down
3/10 - If you aren't going to even bother to try filmmakers than do us all a favour and don't waste our time by subjecting us to a film that clearly you did not give a shit about