October 8, 2014 Wer (Movie Review)
Taking place in Lyon, France, Wer is the latest movie from Director William Brent Bell (Stay Alive 2006, The Devil Inside 2013) , who also co-wrote the film with Writer Matthew Peterman. It is a visual treat and a unique take on werewolf films, released on August 19, 2014 via FilmDistrict.
Going back to a traditional wolfman style film, Wer stars A.J. Cook (Criminal Minds TV series 2005-2015, Final Destination 2 2003), who makes her most recent foray into Horror as Katherine Moore, a criminal defense attorney and Human Rights advocate. Katherine is requested to defend Talan Gwenyk (first time actor Brian Scott O’Connor), the man arrested for the gruesome murders of the Porter family. Police and news reporters first believe the attacks to be from an animal, but they soon find evidence to support their arrest of Talan, a man who is unusually large, hairy, and unsociable.
Katherine’s father was French, and she has chosen to practice law in France. She is aided by her assistant, Eric (Vikram Sahay: American Reunion 2012, My Awkward Sexual Adventure 2013), a computer hacker who left America under threat of criminal proceedings, and her former lover, Gavin (Simon Quarterman: The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior 2002, The Devil Inside 2012), an English man with a PHD in forensics. Katherine’s suspicions rise when she learns that Talan’s family owns land that is believed to be wanted by the French Government. That, in combination with Talan’s unique medical problems, lead the team to initially believe he is the subject of prejudice and discrimination. This angers Katherine, and she launches full force into a medical defense, trying to prove that Talan would not have been capable of such crimes.
Talan has to undergo medical testing and it is soon discovered that he suffers from a very rare medical condition that causes his extreme features, black outs, and crippling pain. While undertaking the seizure test, Talan undergoes an incredible transformation that throws the case into a tail spin. Instead of defending Talan, Katherine, Gavin, and Eric must fight for their lives and side with the police. Everything she thought she knew was real was a lie. She uncovers a dark secret, one so unbelievable it would be impossible to believe except for the hard evidence. Including the Police and the rest of the town of Lyon in on the discovery of the secret was a fabulous way of not having to use the tired, ‘no one will believe me’ scenario. Wer starts a new generation of intelligent Horror films, relying on the viewers ability to pick up the subtle nuances throughout.
Wer is deep and dark with many unforeseen twists and turns. The special effects are exceptional and the scenic French cinematography makes the audience feel that they are right there with the characters. Expect the unexpected and expand with Wer as the ending is a complete surprise, keeping the viewer guessing and leaving it open for a sequel. CrypticRock give Wer 5 out of 5 stars.