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Get your adrenaline fix with ‘The Wolfman’

Want to find a good way to come down off of the Valentine’s Day high? Are you looking for a good horror flick that takes you back to the golden age of film? If you are, then The Wolfman might be the movie that is just right for you.
Released on February 12, The Wolfman is a modern remake of the 1941 classic horror film: man arrives in a new town, man investigates in the creepy forest, man gets bitten by a strange animal, man then turns into said strange animal, and many adrenaline jumps occur along the way.
The storyline of The Wolfman kicks off in 1891 in Blackmoor, England, with a letter urging Lawrence Talbot (portrayed by Benicio del Toro) to return to his ancestral home of Talbot Manor to aid in the search for his missing brother, Ben (Simon Merrells). Talbot arrives at the mansion to be greeted by his father, Lord John Talbot (Anthony Hopkins) and his brother’s fiancée, Gwen Conliffe (Emily Blunt). Upon hearing that his brother is dead, Talbot investigates in the village and the gypsy camp, only to find himself caught in the midst of an attack by a strange creature. In the fray, Talbot is bitten by the mysterious beast and is taken back to Talbot Manor. After the arrival of Aberline (Hugo Weaving), the inspector from Scotland Yard, Lord Talbot cryptically warns his son to be on his guard. After nights of what can only be described as a bloody requiem, Talbot is then taken to the asylum where he spent a year of his childhood to be mentally rehabilitated by the archetypal shrink, Dr. Lloyd (Michael Cronin). Upon breaking free of the institution, he fully realizes that he has, in fact, become a werewolf, as the multiple hints dropped throughout the film suggest. He develops an informal relationship with Conliffe, but is forced to depart when Aberline begins a thorough search for him. He then returns to Talbot Manor to battle the mystery beast that originally attacked him, only to find a brutal surprise waiting for him at the front door.
The acting in The Wolfman is relatively what you would expect from a typical slash- horror movie: the dialogue was delivered stiffly, the humor was dry, and the actors did not interact with each other as loosely as they ought to have. However, del Toro does an admirable job at transforming from the innocent, ignorant, young man at the beginning into the warped monster he becomes, both figuratively and literally; the special effects for his transformation scenes are particularly astounding, almost specifically roping in the crowd who came to see more than a man in a mask and fur-suit. Hopkins retains a cold and dry exterior, delivering his joking lines with a cool expression, which successfully masks the true horror within him. Blunt performed well for her role, her emotional responses providing a good balance for the almost emotionless acting of the male members of the cast.
The score fits the movie quite nicely, as well. It carries with each scene an underlying depressive and ominous mood, while it also builds up tension whenever the Wolfman makes an appearance. Long rests in the music also help to almost blow up a balloon of suspense, and the first note that accompany the death or sudden movement of a character punctures the balloon and creates an adrenaline rush that will make you jump out of your seat. Danny Elfman, who is most notably known for his work with Tim Burton, composed the score for the movie.
However, even with the good music, interesting acting style, and special effects, the movie could still use a little polishing. For example, the fake blood is obviously just red paint, and there is way too much of it for just one body; somewhat reminiscent of Quentin Tarantino, no? The scenes where Talbot and Conliffe meet in the forest also give off a bit of a Twilight and New Moon feel, which isn’t exactly good for a classic horror movie like The Wolfman.
Overall, I would give The Wolfman 4 out of 5 stars; if the small problems were fixed, possibly a 4½. If you are into a classic thriller with a modern spin on it, or just want a high dose of adrenaline surging through your bloodstream, then The Wolfman is the movie for you.

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