Is becoming a woman analogous, in some deep psychological way, to becoming a werewolf? Ginger is 16, edgy, tough, and, with her younger sister, into staging and photographing scenes of death. They've made a pact about dying together. In early October, on the night she has her first period, which is also the night of a full moon, a werewolf bites Ginger. Within a few days, some serious changes happen to her body and her temperament. Her sister Brigitte, 15, tries to find a cure with the help of Sam, a local doper. As Brigitte races against the clock, Halloween and another full moon approach, Ginger gets scarier, and it isn't just local dogs that begin to die. Written by
Somehow I had missed catching up with this almost "underground" flick although I had it mentally logged as one to check-out. (sorry, check 'oat'....it's Canadian) Addressed that problem yesterday when I picked up the dvd from a $5.95 bargain bin!
I'll keep it simple. This is, if not the best horror film I have ever seen...pretty damn close to it! It is the ONLY horror film that has ever "touched me" emotionally and that it achieved this is quite extraordinary. As a werewolf film it is simply outstanding - blows digitised crap like UNDERWORLD out of the water. The very budgetary constraints of the film HELPED ultimately - the director having to rely on old-fashioned "acting" to hold up viewer credibility. Although Isabelle is the "Ginger" of the title and she is soo damned good, it is Perkins as Brigitte that commands respect for her effort.
The Fitzgerald sisters with their fascination for 'staged horror' find themselves very much on the outer in the school social hierarchy. It is not until Ginger is bitten by a werewolf, in what is undoubtedly the most graphic and realistic lycanthropic savaging ever filmed...that they are forced even further into social isolation. What neither the sisters OR the film ever lose sight of however is their sisterly bond, itself consummated by a blood-pact at childhood.
There is nothing predictable or unoriginal about this film, from the script to the camera angles, right up to the heartfelt tragedy itself of Ginger's condition. And that is why this film leaves most other horror films in its wake - it is multi-dimensional with strong characterizations. Mimi Rogers even, in a smallish part as the girls' mother is spot on hitting the exact right note as a frustrated mother and increasingly unfulfilled wife.
The film weaves brilliantly the coming-of-age pains with the physical transformation brought on by the lycanthropic condition. Marvellous imagery of menstrual blood at critical moments.
Mention should also be made of Kris Lemche's role as Sam, the school druggie and the only friend they have, not that Ginger is interested. Somewhat Christian Slaterish in mannerisms, he contributes strongly to the film's success.
Superbly handled conclusion with both excellent werewolf effects and the saddest of photographic recollections....nothing one would expect to see in formula horror flicks devoted to this subject matter. The very last scene is both moving and inspired.
Obviously I am not alone in this perception. The film carries one of the highest rankings for its genre. I would personally nudge it up to a 7.5 but thats neither here nor there.
Why it received such limited theatrical release worldwide I cannot begin to imagine, but the production teams behind SCREAM, I KNOW WHAT YOU DID...., CABIN FEVER, TCM, DOG SOLDIERS and myriad other clones, should take a long hard look at this and find out HOW to make (and stage) a horror film with pretty much no money!
I would have considered that $19.95 for the dvd was money well spent!
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