Is ‘The Wolfman’ Remake Really As Bad As Everyone Says?

Aoooooooo, werewolves of hum-drum.

Welcome to The Queue — your daily distraction of curated video content sourced from across the web. Today, we’re watching a video essay that explores where the 2010 remake of The Wolfman went wrong.

I’ll cut to the chase: yes. Yes, it is.

Are there worse offenders out there when it comes to werewolf movies and cinematic Wolfmen? Absolutely. Far more egregious werewolf crimes have been committed. Looking at you, 1987’s Teen Wolf Too starring Jason Bateman.

And yet while it’s far from the most punishable offender, The Wolfman has managed to remain in the conversation for a number of reasons. First, there’s the novelty of noted journeyman director Joe Johnston attempting to make something genuinely gnarly and expressionistic. Then there’s the fact that the film slots in neatly alongside a slew of 2010s visually dark creature features with explicit and implied ties to the Universal Monster cannon. Likewise, as long as the hilarious dream of the Dark Universe survives, so too will the cultural relevancy of The Wolfman.

The video essay below does a heroic job of unpacking exactly where Johnston’s remake missed the mark, both on its own terms and as a remake of the 1941 classic. It also generously notes what does work, highlighting Danny Elfman’s fantastic score for shouldering much of the film’s emotional burden.

So, climb aboard, and get your scalpels out. And let’s dissect this bad boy.

Watch “Where did THE WOLFMAN remake go wrong?”

Who made this?

This video on The Wolfman is by Ryan Hollinger, a Northern Irish video essayist who specializes in horror films. Hollinger’s analysis usually takes the shape of a personal retrospective. Indulging in a healthy dose of nostalgia, Hollinger’s videos are contagiously endearing, entertaining, and informative. You can also check out Hollinger’s podcast, The Carryout, on SoundCloud here. And you can subscribe to Hollinger’s YouTube account here.

More videos like this

  • Want to see more of Ryan Hollinger‘s work? Here’s his video on the 1980s nostalgia of the Canadian eldrich horror flic The Void.
  • Here’s another sample of Hollinger’s work: a video on how the found-footage disaster picture The Bay unpacks the horror of inaction during a public health crisis. This video has floated into my mind about once a week over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. Which, given the film’s parasitic subject matter, is…appropriate.
  • And here’s one more video essay from Hollinger on the groundbreaking and underseen found footage horror film The Last Broadcast.
Meg Shields: Based in the Pacific North West, Meg enjoys long scrambles on cliff faces and cozying up with a good piece of 1960s eurotrash. As a senior contributor at FSR, Meg's objective is to spread the good word about the best of sleaze, genre, and practical effects.