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Wolves

Year: 2014
Production Co: TF1 International
Director: David Hayter
Writer: David Hayter
Cast: Lucas Till, Jason Momoa

The problem with a lot of monster movies is that even though you need a story to put your monster in, the filmmaker fails to make it about the monsters, their mythology and what makes them a great archetype as well.

Wolves, from big name screenwriter David Hayter, suffers from this affliction to a damning degree. His werewolves could be swapped out for just about any other creature from aliens to zombies, abandoning everything great about werewolf folklore and just making his monsters bad versions of people who happen to have too much hair and sharp teeth. When they start talking to each other in ridiculous growly voices during the climax, the film will lose you completely if it hasn't already.

Looking like he stepped straight out of an early 90s family sitcom with his floppy shock of blond hair, Cayden (Lucas Till) has a history of turning into a wolf at inopportune moments of emotional intensity – yes, it's another one that dispenses with the full moon motif. So when things get hot and heavy with his girlfriend but he gets too overzealous, he sprouts hair and fangs and tries to rip her to shreds. She manages to escape his clutches, so he goes home to kill his parents instead.

Going on the run, Bruce Banner style, Cayden stops in a town with a cadre of stereotypical biker bad guys who give him the eye while the feisty, beautiful barmaid brushes him off flirt-ishly but might as well be wearing a T-shirt that says 'Will fuck hero before movie over'. He falls in with a kindly farmer and his wife but his powers can't escape the notice of the townspeople forever, all of whom know about the threat posed by evil werewolf gang leader Connor (Jason Momoa).

There's a whole lot of familial history it turns out Cayden's part of, and he has to confront Connor and his gang to stop some curse or promise or something that will see the villain take the beautiful bar owner for himself – of course, by this time Cayden has already banged and relegated her to damsel in distress status.

The look of the picture on screen is slick enough, there's just nothing else here. The plot is an off-the-shelf heroes journey, Till has the charisma and impact of a doorknob, it's as scary and bloody as an egg sandwich and despite everything the title and poster makes you believe, it's not really about werewolves.

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