Cursed Wes Craven

Cursed Wes Craven
Living up to its moniker, this film was indeed cursed from the outset. One could point to the constantly moving release dates, the production problems, script issues or substantial re-shooting, but the real curse must obviously be hanging like a hex around the neck of Wes Craven, who should honestly know better than to get anywhere near a film like this.

In defence of Wes, he has made some cult classic and iconic horror movies (Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes, Nightmare on Elm Street) over his many years and revitalised the horror genre with the self-aware craze initiated by the massive success of the Scream franchise. Of course, he's also made a lot of crap (can anyone forget Shocker?) and Cursed is so bad that it's hard to believe it could have been made by the man behind Freddy.

Cursed is Wes's werewolf tale, but it plays more like a derivative and uninspired mix of The Lost Boys (complete with carnival opening) and Scream (without the cool parts and mocking self-awareness). After striking an "unidentified" animal and getting in a wreck, the sibling duo of Ellie (Christina Ricci) and Zipper (some dude named Solar, really) are attacked while trying to save the driver of the other car. They are of course infected and strange things start happening to them (they want to eat red meat, can smell blood, there dog doesn't like them, etc.). All the while, a werewolf is tramping around, killing off hot, vacuous chicks for no real good reason — well there's a reason explained latter, but it's still not good — Ellie is having problems with her "mysterious" boyfriend (Joshua Jackson of Dawson's fame) and Zipper is battling being a high-school nerd turned super-strong burgeoning werewolf.

While the recent Ginger Snaps series (especially the first two) got it right in both the horror and subtext categories, Cursed gets everything so terribly wrong that it's laughable, which almost makes it entertaining in a "so bad it's funny" way, until you realise that this is an hour-an-a-half of your life you're never getting back. The acting is atrocious, the effects half-assed at best and the script, well, the less said about either the plot or the dialogue the better.

There's a scene in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back where Brenda (Shannen Doherty), starring in yet another Scream sequel, turns to Wes after discovering the identity of the killer and, to paraphrase, says "a fucking monkey, Wes?" During Cursed, you might wish the killer was actually a monkey, after all everyone loves a monkey. (Alliance Atlantis)