Reviews & Counting
# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Wes Craven

Christina Ricci/Ellie
Jesse Eisenberg/Jimmy
Joshua Jackson/Jake
Michael Rosenbaum/Kyle
4 10
In glitzy Hollywood, a hottie (Ricci) and her little twerp brother (Eisenberg) get wounded by a peeved werewolf. They go on to display “special” abilities while a wolf-man randomly pops up to bust pork chops. Who is the culprit behind all this? And more importantly, who gives a Pound Cake’s ass?
In case you didn’t know, CURSED had its own curse glued to its hairy butt behind the scenes. When nearing completion, the Studios decided that the flick just didn’t work for them (Didn’t they read the script prior? Was there even a script?). So the whole she-bang was heavily re-written which resulted in more than half of the movie being re-shot - mucho cast members either replaced or written out and lead effect dude Rick Baker (An American Werewolf in London) jumping ship, to have his empty shoes filled by the KNB boys. The initial planned release date for this bitch in heat was August 8th 2003 and one year or so later, here is the result (shaved to a PG-13 in the States no less but us Canadians really got the R version under our much more leniant PG-13 tag...that's the one I saw). Take a wild guess as to how it turned out!

I cherish at least half of Wes Craven's filmmography and did think that Kevin Williamson's SCREAM screenplay was excellent. These two gents really came through with Ghostface's first adventure and I'm sure that they have a good werewolf film in them, CURSED just isn't it. Now, I’ll give this poodle a bone; it had some of the elements right. Let me take out my “fly for a dead cells guy” checklist. Hot, young and competent cast (Ricci...yum)? CHECK! Quick-wit dialogue that sometimes made me laugh? CHECK! Flashy/easy to the eye directing? CHECK! A handful of kool gore bits? CHECK! For maybe the first 30 minutes or so, I was thinking to myself; “Hey schmuck, it’s not that bad, very generic and maybe too SCREAM like...but not that bad!” The following 70 minutes went on to prove me dead wrong.

So what was MIA in this camp? Try a competently structured narrative for starters. The lazy chain of events snored me where it seemed to go out of its way to be as mundane as possible. Why didn't they ever take the "ideas" one stab further, for them to be more than solely "ideas"? I've seen Daffy Duck cartoons with more guts than this cowardly pup! The main purpose (finding out who the lead werewolf is) and the werewolf drama were executed in a sedated fashion as well. Why didn’t the “infected” leads actually turn into werewolves again? COME ON! Run with your premise dammit! And to make matters worse; there was zero momentum to most of the plot turns, some subplots felt like filler (the gay thing) and our hero characters were boringly passive about their crisis. They didn't care enough about what was going on, hence, neither did I! There was nothing at stakes here!

Of course, being that the lads behind SCREAM tackled this trinket, they just HAD TO re-visit their old pissing grounds! Say hello to a half-assed executed whodunit throughout and long-winded self-explanatory villain monologues at the end. Didn’t these “now tired” devices expire at the beginning of Y2K! Guess not! LAME! What about the HORROR in the cooler? Did it hit the spot? Not really. Although there were a couple of decent jolts (the parking lot attack was the best one), on the whole, I didn’t get enough “howl” for my crotch itches. I so craved more werewolf shenanigans (the fact that the story was slim-fast also had to do with that)! As for the wolf effects themselves; I was beyond under-whelmed. I didn’t dig the designs (one looked like a Teddy Bear), that one "full" transformation was "amateur night" at digital dive and the prominent execution of the beast varied between man in bland “Sing-O-Gram” wolf suit or dodgy Nintendo CG. Not my cup of Drano!

Tag to all that Kibble and Crap, the usual STUPID genre character moves (that Asian girl in the bathroom…what?), an awkward thought process in terms of how the leads dealt with their werewolf affliction, pointless side characters (that psychic…urg), flimsy "Archie comic" romances, the un-justified/annoying presence of “has been” Scott Baio and an ending that just dragged on for too damn long and you get an opus that should’ve been called Howling Part “whatever number they’re at” as opposed to the next Wes Craven/Kevin Williamson match up.

As the end credits rolled, I felt nothing. Much like flatulence at a Fried Chicken restaurant, CURSED came, stank and went. Maybe when they started shooting the picture, they actually had a good script, maybe they didn’t. Maybe all the un-used footage from the first cut could amount to something decent (DVD?), maybe not. Maybe Shannon Elisabeth does the “landing strip” thing down there, maybe she doesn’t. One thing is for certain though; this CURSED was mostly dull, generic, half baked and safe, WB inclined crapola! NEUTER THIS DOG!

The gore howlers in this cut will please genre fans of the world but unfortunately even that couldn't change the fact that the flick blew chunks. We get a body chomped in half, a nasty neck bite, various wolf chompings/slashes and a neat severed head. I wonder what the US Pg-13 Cut will keep in? Too bad that the Wolf effects by Baker or/and KNB disappointed me hardcore.
The talented Christina Ricci (Ellie) deserves better than this soup bowl. Taking into account what she had to play with; she handled herself very well. Jesse Eisenberg (Jimmy) often stole the show as the clever "nerd 2 kool" brother. Very credible! Good job man! Joshua Jackson (Jake) did fine but was often upstaged by his beard. Impressive facial hair Joshua! Michael Rosenbaum (Kyle) showed up long enough to prove that even expensive “toupees” look like “toupees”.
T & A
If Jesse Eisenberg’s white naked ass talks to ya; you’ll be answering the TNA. Unfortunately for me, Ricci kept her “Riccies” to herself. BOOOO!
Although we got some polished style, one truly tense bit and groovy angles/shots, the film didn’t feel like Wes Craven to me. Not one bit! Maybe the Mayo-light script failed to inspire him.
How’s a Pop/Rock & one blah rap song trio with a side order of inconsistent score sound? ARROW NOTE: Pay attention to the score during the “out of the closet” scene; I swear it sounded like a porn track (I would know…trust me).
Yup, CURSED is SCREAM with werewolves...too bad the recipee was slap-dashed our way with uber carelessness! Think; a pinch of “Hollywood life” here, a little dabbling in “Teen Wolf” land there, toss in a couple of kills, slap dash grating side characters, halt the movie for the screenwriter to go into his own shit (the out of place gay outing), throw in Mya (who???), mix in whodunit/villain monologues, look Pacey grew a real beard… and you a got a hit horror movie…right? Wrong. You get a whole lot of attractive "not much"; a Dawson Creek/horror hybrid, with an able cast, some clever lines and a handful of gory bits. Your sweet, 10 year old, "My Little Pony" loving sister, who keeps stealing your dough when your banging that thing you picked up, will love this one! As for me, back to the Pub I go. I wasted enough time on this.
Rumor has it that early versions of the script were about a serial killer in New York City who find out he’s a werewolf.

The first version of the film was about 3 strangers brought together by a car accident and a man-wolf attack, which changed to brother/sister in car accident + wolf attacks.

Groovy host Craig Kilborne has a cameo here.

Mandy Moore (aka Mandy Moore Fallon) was cast as Jenny and had her scenes in the can. She was nixed out when the production went into re-shoots. DAMN YOU!