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|Index||510 reviews in total|
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Spoilers liberally sprinkled within.
I have to encore the earlier comments of Victor Field. I think if the same film were made in the U.S. by American filmmakers in English, the film would be considered roughly equivalent to a poor Jean Claude Van Damme flick. The most obvious influences on this film are anime and Double Dragon video games.
Limited-release period-picture though it is, this is obvious intended to be a horror flick. The reference to philosophes aren't at all insightful. The epilogue during the French Revolution seems forced and disconnected. The whole idea of the wolf being part of a conspiracy by the pope to punish the king of France from meeting too much with philosophers was laughable. Anachronisms are liberally mixed in.
It was hard to get into the actions because the characters weren't particularly likable. Fronsac has his cake and eats it too, making time with both the noblewoman Marianne and his prostitute. As Marianne says, how can he be in love since he just met her. Their romance seems pretty superficial and unrealistic.
The action sequences are gimmicky and subpar compare to many Hollywood films. Every sound, including a pumpkin being shattered, explodes into a huge kaboom. Excuse me, this is a cover-up to obscure how intrinsically lacking the sequences are. How many times can we Mani block with his weapon and than kick the opponent in the stomach - very repetitive. Wider shots should have been used in the action sequences, because the POVs are too close to see things well. Continuity was somewhat lacking from move to move.
The story had a lot of potential, but the movie was never close to
it. It had a number of totally unnecessary slow-motions, which were more
irritating than entertaining.
Marc Dacascos' role of the almost silent indian, should have been an all
silent one, not to mention his acting skills which left much to be
The scenery, however, was great!
I loved The Matrix. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon is one of my top 10.
After seeing the preview for Brotherhood of the Wolf, I was expecting a
Crouching Tiger-Euro style and I couldn't wait!! However, I think I set my
expectations slightly too high. I saw it on Saturday with 2 friends and we
were all severely disappointed!
Being foreign, Brotherhood played at the Ritz which is the local indie/foreign movie house in Philly - where I just fell in love with The Royal Tenenbaums last weekend - and I wonder if said theater had to do with my severe disappointment. Ya know, you enter the type of theater that serves cappuccinos and imported chocolates - you expect quality and taste, or at least a level of movie that goes over your head, not a bonehead action movie. However, had I seen Brotherhood at the regular mass-market theater where I might have seen Not Another Teen Movie, would I have appreciated Brotherhood more?? Maybe...
I really wanted to like the movie but in the end, it was kinda bad!
Parts of the movie were scary and some of the fight scenes were good but otherwise, it was sort of cheesy (not in the good ironic way either)! I thought some of the acting was really bad and other than the action scenes, the production quality was quite low.
And when you finally see the monster, it's really lame and it looked like a rhinoceros. The moment reminded me of the disappointment I felt when Voldemort was unwrapped on the back of Prof. Quirrel's head in the Harry Potter movie.
And as for the subplot about the French Revolution and politics --
If you're gonna go balls out for a Hollywood-style blockbuster, why add depth??
Too bad.. Go see Royal Tenenbaums or Lord of the Rings again instead...
"Brotherhood of the wolf" is Gans´ first movie since the enjoyable "Crying Freeman", a comic-adaptation, which managed to keep the balance between action and drama. This is where "B.o.t.W." fails: The balance. With over 140 minutes this movie is much too long. It starts off very promising as a monster-movie, but obviously Gans doesn´t have the guts to make a simple horror-movie. So "B.o.t.W" tries to be everything: Horror, action, period piece, drama, adventure movie and so on. The problem: All these subplots slow the movie down to a point where you stop to care at all. After one hour of boring dialogues and useless filler scenes, you hope this movie lifts off, but again Gans hits the brakes. There is no rythm there, no red line which keeps it all together, it´s overambitioned and overproduced. The only merits of this boring movie are some visual ideas, but they are only patchwork, the film as a whole lacks style. It shouldn´t be forgotten that the acting is mediocre and the story is full of clichés.
I went to see this film alone on a day off as I did not think any friends would like it. I expected an atmospheric 'name of the rose' type film, which it was for about the first half hour. About forty minutes into the film it became a cross between the matrix, dangerous liaisons, jurrasic park, eyes wide shut, braveheart, crouching tiger, the mummy, sleepy hollow type affair. This is possibly the most multi genre film I have ever seen. There were only about eight people in the theatre when I saw it and its only on two fairly small screens in my city. I can't believe that its not doing more business as its the best blockbuster I've seen all year. I expected an intelligent french horror film and got an intelligent french film with the effects and action of a hollywood no-brainer. Its hard to rate this film because its not what I expected - I read a very small review in a uk broadsheet, but do go and see it, it looks gorgeous, its spectacular, it has a good plot, its reasonably well acted and its very entertaining. This is top-notch, high-brow, no-brainer, excellent trash.
The only redeeming quality of this movie was the scenery. The plot was obvious. The sex was either gratuitous or horrific. The martial arts lacked style and basic choreography. This was the first movie I have attended in a long time in which the ENTIRE audience loudly heckled the movie. Oh, and while most of the actors/actresses were very attractive in the lovely costumes (and lack thereof) they wore, they weren't enough to keep me from thinking I could have had a cavity drilled in the 2 hours I spent in the theater.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Movie Summary: Full frontals (female, of course) for no reason other
than just because, and martial arts. EVERYONE knows martial arts. Even
europeans from the 18th century! Kick it with my ninjas!
And now, down to the nitty gritty:
Plot - There is one there somewhere, but the makers obviously had better things to do than follow it. More boobs, they said. More pointless fight scenes. More shots of that crazy peasant girl with tangled hair who shows up every now and then for a close-up to laugh like a maniac. And more lovelorn looks between whats-his-name and whats-her-face. Why? For no reason! I yawned a lot.
Cinematography - Very nice. It's always like that, isn't it, that when you see a movie that has absolutely stunning visuals, the rest of it is just pure manure. Costuming and the rest of the setting were also quite nice.
Score - Absolutely beautiful. A keeper.
Actors - Let's not go there... The male lead annoyed me to no end. He was so enamored with himself that I'm surprised he even noticed anyone else. He came across like a smug middle aged playboy who hasn't yet grasped the fact that while he was hot way back in the 70's, it was a long time ago. Now he just embarrasses his wife at parties. Giggidy giggidy giggidy! Even if I couldn't recognize any of the supporting actors, I can tell there were real actors there somewhere. I can always tell someone is a trained, experienced actor when he/she doesn't make me wish someone would kill him/her.
I can't say anything about how the director handled his job, because the rest of the film was so bad it distracted me.
Most disgusting moment: The rape scene. I just wanted to grab the person responsible by the neck and shake them. Why was this scene in the movie? It was irrelevant, to say the least. And made me want to take a shower.
Most irritating moment: The brothel scene. As a female viewer I found it unnecessary (see above), and demeaning. I'm so sick and tired of male fantasies I could scream.
Most disappointing moment: When the 'beast' (whatever it was) was shown completely. It was silly. And it was never explained just what exactly it was. Except that, apparently, it was made of wicker and flesh and doodled on a napkin in a café by H.R. Giger and H.P. Lovecraft. While it might have looked kind of cool as a creature, it felt very out of place in the movie. Haven't been this disappointed in a creature since I saw the Village.
Most rewarding moment: The end credits.
this movie is dumb, how did it get made? the french must have no standards, or else like really low budget scariness-- the "wolf" was just a big dog wearing a spiked outfit, it was hilarious. everyone in the movie started laughing at random points throughout.
BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF, or LE PACTE DES LOUPS, is an unfortunate
amalgamation of genres that could only be made outside of Hollywood.
Usually, Hollywood is the last beacon of hope for creativity and
originality but there's one thing you can give Hollywood credit for:
they wouldn't have been dumb enough to have green-lighted such a
ridiculous script: a French period piece where everyone knows kung-fu
fighting? Including an Asian-looking Iroquois? MATRIX a la Francaise?
Yep! The producers were trying to make old France look cool like Neo in
THE MATRIX, which only makes it look even more silly and desperate in
its futile attempt to be hip.
This idea could have worked if it was played strictly for laughs but the film takes itself very seriously and it's extremely long, with multiple faux climaxes. The story, as to be expected with such a stupid combination of genres, is risible and the other stuff, like acting, effects, editing and pacing, all bad beyond belief. I don't know how many times I had to pause, rewind and play again just to see the number of continuity errors. The special effects are truly amateurish, even for this kind of film. And the tone of the film is surprisingly misogynistic and racist. I haven't seen a film this pathetically un-pc in a long time.
But in the end, the film is so bad that if one looks at it as a comedy, it IS good for a few chuckles.
This movie is many genres mixed into one, but in a bad way. Don't see this movie, unless you want to make fun of it and talk for hours about the many ways in which it offended you. Some decent fighting scenes, a lot of bad writing, and annoying camera moves all crammed together.
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