Published on November 8, 2007
Cast: Elias Koteas, Jason Behr, Rhona Mitra, Natassia Malthe
Directed by James Isaac
Running time: 110 minutes
Hanuman rating: HH
In this respect, "Skinwalkers" is a throwback. The film is pathetic enough to rank alongside other recent horror remakes like "The Hills Have Eyes" and "House of Wax". There's little sign of intelligence, originality or, most irritating of all, gore.
We had a right to expect much more from director James Isaac, whose "Jason X" was a far superior effort.
But the fear factor in "Skinwalkers" has been so toned down and heavily edited that you wonder how it ever made it to the big screen. Walking out of the cinema, "refund" was the only thing howling through this critic's mind.
Sadly, the film stars one of Hanuman's favourite actors: Elias Koteas. A veteran of many horror films, including the offbeat "Prophecy" with Christopher Walken and "Fallen", where he plays Denzel Washington's worst nightmare, Koteas brings a commanding presence to whatever he does.
His best role was as the lieutenant who refuses to sacrifice his troops to the ire of Nick Nolte in "The Thin Red Line".
But here, Koteas is outnumbered by inferior actors, including the annoying Rhona Mitra who plays an overly protective mother of a "half-blood" werewolf. Her presence alone is enough to spoil the film from start to finish.
Had Isaac killed off her character early on, and allowed Koteas to raise her son for the rest of the movie, the film might have warranted another two stars.
The script, too, is substandard, bordering on the imbecilic.
In one scene Mitra and Koteas repeatedly plead with the son to keep the door shut as a hostile, bloodthirsty beast seeks entry. So what does the boy do? He opens the door, naturally.
How far does it fall? This film puts the abyss in abysmal.
Essentially the plot pitches good werewolves against their bad brethren. The good ones are so dumb, however, they drop like flies and leave Mitra, Koteas and the boy to the mercy of the bad guys.
The action is deplorable, especially the hand-to-hand combat scenes.
This is one of the worst horror films ever released. It's so bad it makes the glut of new local horror fare look like the work of genius.