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Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning

Year: 2004
Director: Grant Harvey
Cast: Katharine Isabelle, Emily Perkins
I'm always curious about the economics behind making a sequel to a movie that went straight to video to start with - I thought that meant there was no market for them. But in this DVD age, a small cult following can justify another production, considering there are no A list stars with $20 million salaries.

Neither Ginger Snaps films have been cheap, however. The original was a cool twist on the classic werewolf tale - by tying it into the rite of passage from girlhood to womanhood, and while the sequel departs from that and returns to classic horror story territory, it's just as slickly made as the predecessor. Light and shadow are used to great effect in the cinematography and a lonely frontier fort in the time of the settlement of America is used to great effect.

The two sisters from the original, Brigette and Ginger (misplaced a few centuries for a reason that's never explained; maybe the second film - which I haven't seen - does so) stumble onto the fort after wandering through the woods being pursued by something. They tell the soldiers who live at the fort their parents are dead (a lie, we learn as they confide in each other later, although it isn't resolved either), and they have nothing but their unbreakable blood bond.

They also learn that the ever dwindling garrison of the fort is under siege by creatures that attack them under the full moon, and through the providence of the fort's captain (who's also their only ally), Ginger starts to turn.

Teaming up with the mysterious Indian who bought them to safety, Brigette races the clock to find a way to help her sister while the Indian insists she has to die or she'll turn into one of them.

Both girls give great performances and should have more recognition than they have, and while it's a little slow at times (and the werewolves are a letdown - the single aspect of the production that looks cheap), it's still an achievement.

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