Tuesday, October 7, 2014

October Horror 2014: 7 - Silver Bullet

The Stephen King adaptation is a mainstay of any good October marathon.  This year's is the Werewolf-themed Silver Bullet.  This was the directorial debut of veteran TV director Daniel Attias and stars Gary Busey and Corey Haim.

What's going on here is that a small town in Maine is suddenly terrorized by a series of bizarre animal attacks.  A paraplegic boy becomes convinced that the attacks are made by the town's preacher, who is a werewolf.  He enlists the help of his sister and his alcoholic uncle Red to get proof and eventually kill the wolf.

The werewolf transformation is pretty cool, but a standout is a middle sequence where the Reverend begins hallucinating during a service because of his wolfyness.

Some of the acting is actually pretty nice, but then there's also Gary Busey.  Now he's not really bad so much as has a completely bizarre character.  Busey apparently acted each scene as scripted then did additional takes where he ad-libbed all his lines.  The producers liked many of the improvised scenes better, so the performance in the movie is mostly ad-libbed Busey.

The things that fall down the most are the bits Stephen King weirdness.  I don't really think that having the protagonist in a wheel chair was used to advantage at all.  Midway through the movie Red gives the kid a custom-built, motorized, wheelchair that they call the Silver Bullet so they can give the title a double-meaning.  But now he's basically rolling around on a motorcycle so when he has to run away, he's faster than a person on foot would be.  His only problem is running out of gas.

Regardless of any Stephen King-ness it was a pretty fun movie.  The werewolf design was a bit meh, but the transformation was good, the story was decent, and there were some good moments around the preacher's mental state.

Next up, Home Invasion week begins with Funny Games.

No comments: