Brotherhood of the Wolf (2001)
In 1765 something was stalking the mountains of central France. A 'beast' that pounced on humans and animals with terrible ferocity. Indeed they beast became so notorious that the King of France dispatched envoys to find out what was happening and to kill the creature. By the end, the Beast of Gevaudan had killed over 100 people, to this day, no one is entirely sure what it was, wolf? hyena? or something supernatural? Whatever it was, shepherds had the same life-expectancy as the red-suited guys in 'Star Trek'. The Beast is a popular myth in France, albeit one rooted firmly in reality; somewhat surprisingly it is little known to the outside world, and perhaps incredibly it has never been made into a movie. Until now... Based on the true story of the Beast of the Gevaudan that terrorized France in the mid-XVIIIth century, the movie aims to tell first and explain afterwards. In the first part, a special envoy of the King of France, altogether biologist, explorer and philosopher, arrives in the Gevaudan region, in the mountainous central part of France. The Beast has been attacking women and children for months and nobody has quite been able to harm it or even take a good look at it. In the second part, our hero Chevalier de Fronsac will not only have to fight the Beast, but also ignorance, bigotry and conspiracy and will rely on two women, one an aristocrat, the other a prostitute, as well as the enigmatic Mani, an Iroquois he met in New-France (Canada).
In 18th century France, the Chevalier de Fronsac and his native American friend Mani are sent by the King to the Gevaudan province to investigate the killings of hundreds by a mysterious beast.
- The story set in a remote village somewhere in 18th century France, finds the protagonist and his companion coming upon an old man and his daughter apparently being chased and beaten by a group of men. The companion saves the pair and sends them on their way. The hero of the story is a French noble, a scientist, a soldier. We later discover the companion is an American Indian whos now the blood brother of the Frenchman. The village that they are visiting has been besieged by a ferocious beast which preys only on the human population of the village. Throughout the story references are made to wolves, but the French scientist maintains that the beast they search for is not a wolf. The tension is built up with a bizarre cast of characters least of which is the old man and daughter from the beginning of the film. A surreal setting in a superstitious era, complete with accusations of witchcraft, supernatural beings such as werewolves, and the ever ominous presence of the Roman Catholic Church adds to the eerie feeling of the story. Suspicions, accusations and blame are mixed with just enough plot twists to keep the audience thoroughly engrossed and the action scenes are superlative. The ending was not what I expected, nor was it particularly to my liking, but the movie as a wholenot only do I recommend it, Ill watch it again!