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DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 151 minutes, deleted scenes, two documentaries, interview, storyboards, trailer
VIDEO: 2.35:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)
AUDIO: English, French 5.1 Dolby Surround
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish

STUDIO: Universal Studios Home Entertainment/ Focus Features/ StudioCanal/ TF1 Films/ Davis Films
RELEASE DATE: 8-26-2008

BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF is one fantastic film. It takes real history from France in 1764 about an unknown beats called the Beast of Gevaudan. The Chevalier de Fronsac (Samuel Le Bihan) and his native American friend Mani (Mark Dacascos) are sent by the King to the Gevaudan province to investigate the killings of hundreds by a mysterious beast. Fronsac falls for Marianne de Morgangias, the daughter of a wealthy family, while he visits the local brothel to be with the mysteriously alluring Sylvia (Monica Bellucci). The hunts for the beast are ineffective as everyone (except Fronsac and Mani) think wolves are killing the women and children. They discover someone is controlling the beast.

BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF is a unique blend of action, fights scenes that take some material from kung fu, history, and romance. The visual style of director Christophe Gans lends a lot to the film. The film also blends in nudity, violence, religion, and the politics of the time which adds to the complex tapestry of the film's universe. A great cast makes the characters breathe and Vincent Cassell looks different yet again as the wretched brother of Marianne. Not a film to be missed if you haven't seen it if you love action and unique films.

The extras are some the best I have seen on a DVD next to the ones you see on a DVD for a Ridley Scott film. They never feel too long or boring.

Disc 1 has a few deleted scenes with video commentary with director Christophe Gans (and behind-the-scenes footage) that totals to over 40 minutes. One of the scenes was inspired by Portrait Of Jennie. Also the US theatrical trailer is included.

Disc 2 has around three hours of extras-
THE GUTS OF THE BEAST- this 78 minute documentary covers the genesis of the film, casting, art direction, the unique fight scenes (with behind-the-scenes footage of the stunt performers and actors being trained), how the beast was made by Jim Henson Creature Shop (animatronic beast and CGI), and the less noticeable digital effects.
MAKING OF DOCUMENTARY- a unique look at the shooting of the film from the technical problems and the weather throwing the schedule all to hell. Director Christophe Gans takes the problems with stride and laughs it off.

THE LEGEND- an interview with an expert who has gathered the historical facts on the legend of the Beast of Gevaudan.

Also included are storyboards from 12 sequences in the film.

FINAL ANALYSIS: If you haven't seen this knockout film or love it, BROTHERHOOD OF THE WOLF Director's Cut is a two disc that is must see even for the interesting disc 2 extras.

this DVD review is (c)9-6-2008 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com  

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