An Early Look At Cursed

By Garth Franklin Monday August 23rd 2004 01:21AM

'Harasser' scored a look at the "rough cut" of Wes Craven and Kevin Williamson's "Cursed", the long troubled werewolf film and their reaction? "While it isn't great, it's still a fun ride". He's turned in a minor spoiler review and here it is:

"Cursed" - A Review by 'Harasser'

"I'm sure some people know this movie had a troubled history when it went back for reshoots and they basically recast and reshot the whole movie from scratch (check IMDB and some other sources, almost all of the cast listed previously is gone) and it does feel that way in some scenes with some character and plot shifts out of the blue and an abrupt ending that just feels strained. This movie doesn't offer anything new to the werewolf genre per se but it does have a sense of humor in alot of scenes, especially the high school scenes that play on the whole "jock/homophobic teasing" stuff we've seen in numerous teen flicks that pays off nicely in a later, hilarious scene.

Performance wise Christina Ricci and the kid playing her brother are nice but the scenes where they start to act like werewolves after being bitten in the movie's first "Scream" like killing scene are just too reminiscent of a 100 other films, someone in the audience compared it to Teen Wolf in a funny way, especially with the younger brother having a reawakening in school now that he's got some werewolf in him or Ricci starting to sniff around her office when something attracts her new senses. The rest of the cast-from Shannon Elizabeth, Mya, Portia Rossi to Michael Rosenbaum, Scott Baio and Joshua Jackson are ok but are mainly in the movie to provide red herrings to the identity of the main werewolf and then you scratch them off your list as the movie progresses.

Yes, I did say Scott Baio, who is in the movie for about 2 minute tops as himself and does nothing plot wise (this was not the case in an earlier script review I read which apparently was filmed then scrapped) yet gets his name in the opening credits, that was weird, if we were giving a credit in accordance with time on camera then Craig Kilborn deserved a co-starring credit. Baio is in the movie for some notoritey but it just feels sad not seeing him doing anything major, I was happy to see the man still working though. One funny note, Michael "Lex Luthor" Rosenbaum's hair piece is so distracting I thought for a minute it might be the werewolf but alas, it wasn't.

Now for the real juice, the werewolf FX and gore, designed by Rick Baker and taken over by the KNB folks (read on some other sites) are just awesome, this is one great looking biped wolf easily eclipsing Helsing's take, even when it's CG or man in suit onscreen it just looks big and awesome, and you really get to see it all around, once they show it they dont hide it. This is one brutal werewolf that doesnt take any shit. Sooo, overall I give the movie a recommendation although it feels slapdash in the non-werewolf scenes, the plot is the same as always with werewolf films-people get bitten, have to find the head werewolf, yada, yada, yada- the humor does come out sometimes and the monster elements work great, there are some nice scares and grisly gore(whether that gets trimmed who knows), and some cliches' but no one is perfect, this isnt the redefinition of the werewolf genre that Scream was for slasher films some started labelling it when they heard Craven and Williamson were involved but it is fun nonetheless, and hey, how many movies can claim to have a were-dog and a werewolf giving someone the finger".