Written by Karen Walton and directed by John Fawcett, Ginger Snaps
combines horror and pubescent angst in a thoughtful portrayal of female teenage development both socially and physically. The Fitzgerald sisters are alienated to the point of discussing honouring the suicide pact they made when they were eight, and producing disturbing mock-up photographs of their violent deaths. Then the slightly older Ginger is bitten by a werewolf and starts developing hair in odd places and feeling more alive than she has ever felt--but it's not entirely clear whether this is sexual maturity or monstrosity creeping up on her until she starts developing canines and a tail. The look and feel of the movie is a cross between Grimms's Fairytales and Neil Jordan's A Company of Wolves
, while the influence of Buffy the Vampire Slayer
runs through both script and cinematography--which means it occasionally looks like an extended episode of Buffy
, minus the Vampire slayer herself. The performances of Emily Perkins as the nervy Goth Brigitte and of Katherine Isabelle as the extrovert charismatic Ginger are more or less faultless; we are taken to the heart of this claustrophobic relationship just as it starts to implode. Mimi Rogers as their ditzy mother and Kris Lemke as the stoner who tries to help Brigitte are almost equally excellent.
On the DVD: The DVD includes as special features some impressive screen tests by Perkins and Isabelle in which we see them evolving their final takes on the characters; we also get a mildly interesting documentary on the construction of the werewolf Ginger becomes and a featurette that has some snappy one-liners from the cast, as well as production notes and cast notes. The Dolby sound catches the nervy grungy world of the film, which is presented in 16:9 ratio.--Rox Kaveney
Ginger (Katharine Isabelle) and Brigitte (Emily Perkins) are two teenage sisters fed up with the routine of high school, dating and parents. They long for something which would bring a little excitement into their lives, but when Ginger is attacked by a werewolf it's maybe a little too much, too soon. Over the following months, Ginger undergoes some surprising physical and psychological transformations. Brigitte does her best to fight against the changes and win her sister back, but with Ginger having now infected her boyfriend Jason (Jesse Moss), it seems that she might be fighting a losing battle.