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on 19 February 2018
Extended Cut! - I didn't notice any difference though. It's still a rather odd and unsatisfying film in which you cannot identify with anyone or anything they do. Emily Blunt's character is severely underwritten, but then, so is Beniccio Del Toro's and Anthony Hopkins'. It's an altogether mess in terms of script and the rather odd casting of Del Toro as an English aristocrat! Weird! And to top it all they've wedged Inspector Aberline from the Jack The Ripper case into this in the form of Hugo Weaving. The effects are pretty good, but the werewolf, once you see him, looks a bit cuddly to be honest. The music is so-so.

The Bluray offers the Theatrical and Extended Cut, with a good selection of extras.
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HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERon 13 December 2011
At times the extended version of 2010's The Wolfman is a case of a film failing for all the right reasons: an interesting attempt to mix a classical moviemaking aesthetic and old school production techniques with modern production values that often does a lot right but strangely never quite works as well as it should. Whether that's down to much-publicised production problems and extensive reshoots that saw the budget nearly double while the studio tinkered with it for the best part of a year-and-a-half and ensured that neither the 118-minute unrated cut on DVD or the 102-minute theatrical version that accompanies it on the Blu-ray is a true reflection of the director's original cut is a moot point, but it may simply be that director Joe Johnston took too classical an approach at times. The 1941 version isn't a great film by any means and certainly didn't have the resources this reworking had, but at least it kept things moving while this takes its cue from its house of buried secrets and underplays its hand a little too much at times. Johnston may have talent and an obvious love and respect for old Hollywood and classic filmmaking, but at times you can't help thinking that Anthony Hopkins' could have been talking about him when he says "You have a long way to go yet, my young pup."

The first hour of the extended version certainly drags its paws a bit with too many deliberately lifeless domestic scenes until it finally develops some real bite in the second half with a combination of vivid setpieces, be they beastly rampages, rooftop chases or a drug-fuelled nightmare asylum sequence that give great vintage montage straight out of the 40s, and not entirely unexpected plot twists that put a new spin on the troubled father-son relationship of the original film. Most importantly it develops a sense of pace and urgency that carries you along that the first half could sorely have done with. The original Universal monster movies were always tightly paced affairs around the 70-minute mark, and the studio seem to have taken a leaf from their book with the shorter version they eventually released on the big screen, which is surprisingly a huge improvement and a much more satisfying film by far.

Most of the cuts are from the first half of the picture, and there are few that you could disagree with. Gone is Talbot's unsympathetic backstage introduction, his half-gypsy heritage and much of Hopkins' silent eccentricities, improving his performance in the process as well as making things move faster and smoother. It's not all good news, with the revamped 40s Universal logo replaced, while some atmospheric shots of Talbot Hall and a cameo with an unbilled Max Von Sydow as a stranger offering a subtle link between the werewolf of this tale and the Beast of Gévaudan hitting the cutting room to keep things moving. Ultimately they're trade-offs worth making, proving the old adage that what you leave out can be as important as what you keep in the editing. That's even more noticeable in one of the deleted scenes on the disc where the Wolfman gatecrashes a society masque where the guests all think he's wearing a costume: while obviously extremely expensive, it doesn't really work and would have slowed the picture to a halt just when it had picked up a full head of speed.

In a role outside his usual comfort zone Benicio Del Toro gives an interestingly subdued performance that doesn't play for easy sympathy, Anthony Hopkins similarly tones down his potentially hammy role while a dowdy looking Emily Blunt gives the kind of capable performance that's more her stock in trade than the exceptional ones many critics claim. Even Hugo Weaving is pleasingly understated for once as the policeman on his trail (Inspector Abilene of Jack the Ripper infamy, no less), with the sole portion of ham being served up by Anthony Sher's Jermunn Sykiatwrist in a performance seasoned with a liberal dash of Lionel Atwill.

Despite their Oscar win the makeup effects aren't as impressive as they could be, although Rick Baker does make up for the underwhelming first transformation with an especially visceral second one in front of hundreds of assembled doctors and some rather impressive makeup in the finale that makes the actor underneath the hair recognisable even though it's almost certainly a stuntman. Similarly a few other effects are less than impressive, looking like last minute additions to try to beef things up, although the combination of CGi and miniatures does allow our tormented antihero to go on the rampage right in the heart of Victorian London in the best of the film's big three setpieces (the other two, an attack on a gypsy camp by a barely glimpsed beast and Talbot taking on the werewolf who created him as a mansion burns around them are pretty good too). Despite the post-first cut changes, Talbot never turns into a demonic wolf but remains very definitely a wolf MAN, largely walking upright in a surprisingly effective throwback to the original Universal Wolfman cycle.

The film is also very obviously influenced by Bram Stoker's Dracula [DVD] [1992], and not just in the casting of Hopkins. Danny Elfman's brooding orchestral score nods to Wojciech Kilar's memorable music for Coppola's film without falling into slavish impersonation that you wonder why the studio ever thought removing it and commissioning an electronic replacement (by Paul Haslinger) was a good idea before they came to their senses and put it back: it's not one of his major works, but it serves the film and its mood well. The early somewhat monotonous tone in the extended cut certainly hinders it and the lack of a convincing love story takes the pathos from the ending, but for all the problems and accompanying bad press, in the 102-minute version at least the film ultimately turned out surprisingly well and easily one of the best monster movie revivals in a long time.

You won't find much detail about those problems in the extras on the Blu-ray - along with a trivia track, picture-in-picture featurettes and occasional commentary by Johnston, the accompanying featurettes are of the promotional puff-piece variety, though the studio's uncertainty is very evident in the two alternate endings on the Blu-ray that alter the characters' fates in the final shots: one might have worked had the love story been there but the other simply looks like a cheap bit of sequel baiting. As usual DVD buyers get the short stick, with only the longer cut of the film and the deleted and extended scenes.
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on 14 March 2018
Lawrwnce Talbot returns to his ancestral home when he finds out that his brother has died horribly in the moors. When he starts looking for his killer, Lawrence gets badly mauled. He recovers, but soon finds out that there is something wrong with him. This is a good re-telling of original Universal movie from 1941. Absolutely great.
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on 15 February 2017
Good retelling of the classic Universal horror film, The Wolfman. many people had a problem with the style of the Wolfman but i think they missed the point, it was supposed to look like the old black and white style of monster. Maybe the film is a little over long and slow in parts but it's still a very stylised retelling. Great cinematography and a brilliant score by Danny Elfman makes this a definite buy for any fan of the Universal Monster Movies.
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on 29 September 2010
I watched this DVD armed with numerous reviews and opinions laced with Hollywood expectation. I was pleasantly surprised! It's mixed reception clouded the scope and imagination of this classic re-telling of Werewolf legend, yet once I had pressed play on my DVD player I found myself gripped and taken into the atmospheric world of Victorian Darkmoor Manor and the Curse of the Talbot Family. Impressive make-up effects by Rick Baker and solid direction from Joe Johnston move the film at a good pace. Benecio Del Toro is in good form as Lawrence Talbot and a sinister performance from Anthony Hopkins as Lord of the Manor (Talbot's Father). Hugo Weaving adds Inspector Aberline of Jack the Ripper fame into the scene and gives the role gravitas as the monsters nemesis with Emily Blunt playing Gwen Conliffe the recently bereaved fiancée of deceased Ben Talbot. The film begins with Ben Talbot's grisly murder, and Gwen travelling to London to find his brother Lawrence. She pleads with Lawrence to investigate Ben's disappearance (not realising Ben Talbot was dead) and finds Lawrence dismissive. The story then follows Lawrence Talbot who then decides to try to find out his brothers fate and on arrival at Darkmoor discovers from his Father that his brother is indeed dead. The story thus unfolds with Lawrence Talbot unravelling the gruesome truth of his family secret. Suspenseful and eerie with Rick Baker's superior Lycanthrope transformation scenes and occasional shocks to keep the blood pumping, Some gory scenes are involved giving the film a deserved (15) rating.

In short I highly recommend this film to fans of the horror genre and it gets a five star rating from me. If you enjoyed American Werewolf in London you will enjoy this movie.
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on 22 March 2016
Noticed Sir Anthony Hopkins starred in this Universal werewolf film so decided to watch it, pleased that I did. A well paced plot, good characters and a great ending.
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on 5 August 2016
A good horror film. Benicio Del Toro is good in the lead roll. Another great acting performance from Anthony Hopkins.
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on 25 July 2015
Really a treat to watch this
Allways love were wolf types
But most are really low budget bad/awfull acting
No graphics/special effects
But this bought back faith very good film decent story line
Enough gore to keep amused by well worth a watch
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on 12 June 2013
this is a good version, of what seems to be another version of wolf man with Lon Chaney, that was a good version for it's day. Maybe this one is a modern turn, on that one" as the story lines are more or less, the same. the special effects are good as well. Benicio del Toro seems to be a good character actor, and suits the part in this one really well. definitely worth a watch.
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on 13 May 2017
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