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Longshot looks at Gans' BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLVES... Possibly one of the great 2001 movies!

Published at: Jan. 11, 2001, 12:50 a.m. CST

Hey folks, Harry here... one must ask themselves how excited Longshot below must've been to write this review in his second language. But I will tell you this, the word on this film out of EURO-AICN has been nothing short of ELECTRIC! Our guys in Europe have been telling us this is the one... Well, when is it playing the USA or the rest of the world? Not sure as of yet, but if I were scheduling the SXSW film festival, I'd be campaigning these filmmakers like a county in Florida. Read and weep... we've got a wait ahead of us!








This morning, I attended the 1st big screening of this French event film. A strange thing happened when I arrived at the theater : there was a 150 persons queue. this never happens at professionnal screenings. Although we arrived half an hour before the screening, there wasn't any good seats left in the 800 seats theater. And I learned later that a lot of people were refused : there wasn't any seats left. This never happens... The trailers were great, the buzz was high, the budget huge (for a French film), of course my expectations and hopes were at the highest point. I only could be disappointed...

But I'm not : the film is fantastic, it's a big-time nerd party : a horror film in period setting with a huge budget and done with a lot of style. I don't want to spoil the story. It's great. Think "Sleepy Hollow" but 10,000 times better. All the film is a huge bet : the visual style is a cross-over between classic Sergio Leone, John Woo, Matrix or even Mortal Kombat and all in a true-to-life 18th Century French setting! Of course some of the bets are lost, and some scenes look "strange" / out of context. But 99% of the time, all those risks are assumed and the bet is won with exhilarating pleasure for us. It's not a masterpiece but it surely is one of the most entertaining piece of moviemaking I've seen in the last years. My friends and me could not help but smile and giggle like little girls for 2h24. The film is so dense, there are so many scenes, we could not keep track of the time. At a moment, we thought the movie was coming at its conclusion and that there was only 15 minutes left. But when we realized (after taking a look at our watch) that there was still 1 hour to go, we HAD to cheer openly.

There are so many great scenes in the film; and it all holds perfectly. Did you ever had the peculiar feeling that the film you are watching was "made for you", because it includes all the elements that you love in movies? This film will do it for you. If you like Kung-fu movies, beautiful sceneries, fantastic editing, Conan Doyle, big crashing fight sounds, a naked Monica Bellucci, great score, monster movies, all serving the film and done with taste; this film might be the most entertaining you will see this year.

On a technical view, the director Christophe Gans reunited a dream-like team : DP of MIMIC, editor and fight choregrapher of HARD BOILED, composer of the EVIL DEAD trilogy, etc.

I could go on for hours. let's just say it's a great film and soooooooooooooooooooo entertaining.

Final question. Does it feel like a French film or an American one ? It just feels like a film done by a French director who loves American films (the ones we also love i.e. I even found a scene in the film reminiscent of PREDATOR !)

BR to all and go see it as soon as it lands in your shores : it's so ambitious and different. You can't expect all that you will see in this movie but it's fantastic !

**LONGSHOT**

Readers Talkback

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  • Jan. 11, 2001, 1:09 a.m. CST

    Is KingKwanzaa posting while on a hallucinogenic?

    by vroom socko

    Just what the hell was all that supposed to mean anyway?

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 1:27 a.m. CST

    has mark dacascos in it

    by bluelou_boyle

    that boy knows his martial arts, see drive:directors cut

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 1:42 a.m. CST

    Merci Jan. Bonne Chance Christophe.

    by frenchie

    .

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 1:56 a.m. CST

    And now KingKwanzaa's post has been pulled.

    by vroom socko

    Which means now I look like a fucking nitwit instead of him.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 2:54 a.m. CST

    I hope that image is used on the poster cos it's fuckin fantasti

    by Pryors Moustache

    It is, y'know....

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 3:27 a.m. CST

    That image IS fucking cool!

    by Zombie Vig

    I have to agree with Pryors Moustache and i hope they have a bigger one to put on my desktop.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 4:30 a.m. CST

    About time.

    by wongfeihung

    It's about time Mark Dacascos starred in a movie that kicks ass. He's a pretty good actor and a shit hot fighter - shame that he seems to have been dumped into the STV, B-movie genre. Lets hope that this is the start of his ascent to the ranks of action hero of the new millenium.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 5:18 a.m. CST

    Le pacte des loups + THE LORD OF THE RINGS (READ THIS)

    by panpil

    Hello everybody. My sources told me that The Lord Of The Rings trailer will be attached with this film and it will premiere in France January 31. Can't wait. panpil

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 6:01 a.m. CST

    "LE PACTE" WILL RULE!

    by Clouseau

    "LE PACTE DES LOUPS" will rule and will be a revolution in French cinema. The one we have been waiting for. Why? Because Gans is a bloody great director, probably the only one in France who can bring back genre film. Wait. This is only the beginning... Et Christophe, si tu viens lire ces messages de nerds, les deux horribles de Hong Kong te font la bise. ALL THE BEST !

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 6:24 a.m. CST

    Better than Sleepy Hollow?

    by Bob X

    Everything from the director (and the star) of Crying Freeman has to be cool. The trailers look pretty good, too. But one ecstatic French fanboy is not reason enough to make me start drooling in anticipation. Especially if he proclaims its "10.000 times better than Sleepy Hollow". Not that I want to compare Burton and Tolkien, but that kind of reminds me of people who say Robert Jordan's books are a million times better than Lord of The Rings. Thou shalt not overhype!

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 6:39 a.m. CST

    Trailers are over at DARKHORIZONS

    by Critical Bill

    Also, the French-reading can check out the homepage, www.lepactedesloups.com This movie is about the Beast of Gevaudan, a wolf or wolf-like beast or beasts which supposedly killed over 100 people in a rural area of France over a period of three years. Animatronics by Jim Hensen Studios.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 6:50 a.m. CST

    Monica Belucci--naked?!?

    by Lance Rock

    Good Lord--She is unbelievably gorgeous: http://www.resoftlinks.com/cs1/monicabellucci-2/??

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 6:52 a.m. CST

    Sounds like one to watch!

    by Rosie Lass

    I loved Sleepy Hollow and the picture makes it look like an up-to-date version of a cool Hammer Horror film. What's it actually about though? Is it some kind of were-wolf film? I am reminded of Angela Carter's In the Company of Wolves which was a really dark fairy tale.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 7:21 a.m. CST

    Un message pour Christophe

    by Liam

    Quand tu viendra pr

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 7:54 a.m. CST

    Le Pacte des Wolves

    by Mister M

    Le Pacte des Loups should be a great moment in French cinema. At last, a talented and clever director, who likes sci-fi movies, kung-fu flicks, musicals AND Visconti (yes, you can love all that), attends to make a genre masterpiece : adventure, horror, romance, action, poetry, period piece... I really pray for this movie to be a great one, that should motivate young filmmakers in France and in Europe to direct more risky films, in the american way. Monsieur Gans, si vous venez visiter ce site, je vous f

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 7:54 a.m. CST

    Oh. My. God. Philip Kwok choreography, Naked Monica Belluci, S

    by Wesley Snipes

    It sounds like the reviewer's comments about it being a movie nerd's dream come true is right on the money! Can't wait to see this one! One question: Does Daascascos speak French or English?

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 8:04 a.m. CST

    Can't wait to see it!

    by psi98

    There, I say it again. Can't wait to see it. Finally someone with the guts to do something different for a change. Good luck Christophe. Et une autre bise de la paire de fous tout la bas a Hong Kong. (ou on entretient le buzz sur le pacte). Yo

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 8:38 a.m. CST

    Fingers Are Crossed, But...

    by Anton_Sirius

    Crying Freeman really sucked. It was deadly boring- the fight scenes were slow as molasses. Let's hope Christophe has learned something since then.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 8:48 a.m. CST

    IT WAS F...ING GREEEAAAT !!!

    by Rikou

    I saw the movie yesterday and it was amazing !!!! This year at Cannes, I had the chance to interview Christophe Gans, Mark Dacascos, Samuel Le Bihan, Vincent Cassel, Monica Bellucci and many others. I was waiting for this movie so much long... All the movies fans, all the people who love Argento, Leone, Peckinpah, McTiernan, Carpenter, Corbucci, Duvivier, Burton... YOU WILL LOVE THIS MOVIE !!! We offered you recently the set of "Jurassic Park". In a week, our gift is called "Le Pacte des loups" !!! Rendez-vous on the 17th January on http://www.canalplus.fr Rikou

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 9:58 a.m. CST

    could someone tell me WTF THIS FILM IS ABOUT?

    by Airchinapilot

    I've read the posts and the 'story' several times and no one is saying WTF the film is about. Uh, journalism guys? It's a grab bag of a bunch of genres? Oh well, i guess I'll have to go to Dark Horizons after all.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 10:19 a.m. CST

    okay. this looks pretty interesting

    by Airchinapilot

    I'm not up on my grade 12 French but this looks pretty good visually. Trailer starts slow but it ends with a bang. Dunno about that 18th century-fu at the end but it could be an interesting twist. The guy at the end looks like an Indian. But does this take place in France or Quebec? Can a French poster give us the run down on the plot summary?

  • Jan. 11, 2001, noon CST

    verisimilitude

    by IronRabbit

    I hope it isn't TOO much like SH, but from the reviewers statement that some scenes look "strange/out of place" I wonder if it doesn't have the same problems. SH was a very good movie, but I hated it because it broke my suspension of disbelief and from then on I'm not experiencing the movie, I'm critiqueing it. What the heck am I talking about, you ask. Important outdoor scenes of SH LOOK like they are on a sound stage. 12 rows of corn, then a black curtain. The big important tree is well lit, but utter blackness startes 10 feet behind it. Once I stop believing the characters are out in a dark forest, it is ruined. Remember in Armageddon when they launch 2 shuttles at the same time, against the spin of earth, swoop in to dock with a spinning Mir to refuel, then "fly" through the asteroids. Some of you thought "that looks cool." Some of us thought "that is utterly ridiculous, and so is that, and so is that, etcetera and heavy orchestral swells are not going to make me forget it." I'm not saying movies need to be realistic, they just need to be close enough that the audience CAN believe it. In the context of a "science" movie about asteroids, it doesn't fit. In the context of a fantasy movie like Star Wars, I don't care if the space ships "fly" through the non-atmosphere, it fits. I just had to get that rant off my chest. I hope the "strange" scenes in Brotherhood of Wolves don't make me stop to think , because I like the idea of the movie.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 2:12 p.m. CST

    Sounds pretty cool...

    by docsisx

    Neither this nor Final Fantasy looks too too interesting. There is just something about serious CGI Animation that bugs me. If its a a movie that can be made with REAL people, unlike Toy Story and A Bug's Life, then make the gol darn movie with REAL people! Check out my site which is basicially just a gathering of all movie news...geocities.com/flzine

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 2:43 p.m. CST

    Crying Freeman

    by Adrian_b

    Gans also directed "Crying Freeman", which is in my opinion one of the best action movies of the 90ies. It starred Mark Dacascos in his best role. If "Le Pacte des loups" is as good as this, im more than satisfied.

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 3:01 p.m. CST

    Two languages for the price of one, or something like that

    by LinaInverse

    <http://www.upcomingmovies.com/brotherhoodofthewolf.html> claims that the film shoot took place in both French *and* English, so there won't be any dubbing or subtitling necessary when the movie hits the States. Can't wait 'til it gets here!

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 3:14 p.m. CST

    it's christmas, hanukkah, kwanzaa and ramadan all rolled into on

    by tommy5tone

    a new freakout from the director of 'crying freeman'? starring that underrated ass-kicker mark dacascos? WITH A NAKED MONICA BELLUCCI? damn, y'all, DAMN!

  • Jan. 11, 2001, 5:41 p.m. CST

    Wolves aplenty

    by EmperorCaligula

    Unless you saw the movie, you couldn't be sure it's about were-wolves. It's about G