Search - Wolf on DVD

Actors: Jack Nicholson, Michelle Pfeiffer, James Spader, Kate Nelligan, Richard Jenkins
Director: Mike Nichols
Genres: Drama, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
R     1997     2hr 5min



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Movie Details

Actors: Jack Nicholson, Michelle Pfeiffer, James Spader, Kate Nelligan, Richard Jenkins
Director: Mike Nichols
Creators: Douglas Wick, Jim Harrison, Michele Imperato, Neil A. Machlis, Robert Greenhut, Wesley Strick
Genres: Drama, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Love & Romance, Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Sony Pictures
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen,Widescreen,Anamorphic - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 11/26/1997
Original Release Date: 06/17/1994
Theatrical Release Date: 06/17/1994
Release Year: 1997
Run Time: 2hr 5min
Screens: Color,Full Screen,Widescreen,Anamorphic
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English, French, Spanish
Subtitles: English, Spanish, Georgian
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Movie Reviews

"The worm has turned and is now packing an Uzi, Mary."
H. Bala | Carson - hey, we have an IKEA store! - CA USA | 02/16/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)

"For those who had never seen Jack Nicholson play it meek in a movie, this may be as meek as dude gets (and then it only lasts for about half an hour). In WOLF, Nicholson plays middle-aged softie Will Randall, a mild-mannered hubbie locked in a marriage of indifference. Will is also the editor-in-chief of a respected New York publishing agency - that is, until he gets demoted, at which point he assumes this indignant but resigned look. As it turns out, this would only be the first in a series of betrayals, and Will Randall looks to be just another in a long line of easily dismissed victims. Except...

WOLF starts out in a snowy, moonlit scene in which Will Randall, motoring from Vermont to Manhattan, is bitten by a wolf he had accidentally run over. And soon the shocking changes begin to manifest. Will feels strangely rejuvenated, even as he develops extremely heightened senses. Suddenly he's able to eavesdrop from across the atrium, sniff out morning liquor on a co-worker's breath, and hurdle tall walls in slow motion. His newly gained confidence allows him to take charge of his life and even revenge himself on those what done him wrong. And then, one day, a disconcerted Will Randall wakes up, soaked in blood.

Once in a blue full moon, a schlock genre spits out a gem. I happen to think that WOLF is one of the better, smarter entries in werewolf cinema, and I'd even put it up there with An American Werewolf in London, The Howling (Special Edition) and The Company of Wolves. I dig WOLF for the various elements which come correct. For a contemporary film, it wallows in this marvelous gothic atmosphere. There are wicked, unexpected flourishes of humor, and even a smattering of social satire, if one presumes that Will Randall's gradual descent from reserved refinement to uninhibited wolfishness is a metaphor for the predatory, in-the-trenches facet of the New York publishing world.

It's weird seeing Jack Nicholson in an underdog role, but it's very neat seeing his docile, dumped-on character - whose traits of "taste and individuality" suddenly become liabilities in his job - gaining a huge pair and constructing such a ruthless yet elegant get-back. Nicholson submits a layered interpretation, delivering a fascinating study of a cultured man's growing horror as he succumbs to his baser instincts. The fascinating bits all have to do with that part of him which revels in this turn to savagery. While Nicholson does get moments to chew up scenery, for a good part we're treated to a restrained performance, although, having said that, there's a whiff of that devilish Jack just underneath most of the scenes. Casting dude as a lycanthrope is a no-brainer; there's always been something feral about Jack. And, when he chooses, who else can apply a more baleful, wolfish glare?

Nicholson is supported by sharp performances by Michelle Pfeiffer (still very much in her babedom, in 1994) as surly heiress and wounded soul Laura Alden, in whom Will Randall finds a kindred spirit, and Christopher Plummer who, as Randall's boss and Laura's father, flaunts just enough equal doses of sophistication, despicability and worldly understanding that he invites this ambivalent, just-on-principles form of dislike. And James Spader rocks. James Spader for a while had cornered the market on those oily backstabbling yuppie parts. This is never more exemplified than in his role of Stewart Swinton, Randall's friend and underling, whose calculated smarm and brand of "heat and gossip" contrive to betray Randall in all ways.

Having recently reseen WOLF, I'm again startled that the violence is so low-key. The werewolf scenes are understated, the werewolf make-up not as dynamic or viscerally rendered as, say, that in THE HOWLING or AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON. WOLF instead relies more on suspense and the sense of horror being evoked thru effective use of lighting and score, thru adroit character study and spot-on acting. The disappointing thing is that WOLF, in its climactic scenes, resorts to a typical werewolf fighty fight. And I'm still not quite sure whether I like the ending or not, although the closing shots certainly smack of the darkly poetic. In the final tally, WOLF is overwhelmingly a terrific horror movie, dark and subtle and literate, romantic and wicked funny. So, er, go ahead... take a bite of this (sorry, I groaned too)."
Jack the wolf
D. Roberts | Battle Creek, Michigan United States | 12/10/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Jack Nicholson plays a werewolf, and he's the most natural werewolf since Boris Karloff. James Spader plays a weasel and he is equally adept in that role. Rounding off this impressive ensemble cast (for a werewolf movie) are Christopher Plummer as a man with altogether too much wealth and power, and Michelle Pfeiffer as his lovely daughter.

Fans of werewolf movies may be surprised at the timbre of this particular tale. The whole story is very surreal and has an everpresent dream-like feel to it. The special effects of werewolves & transformation are actually pretty scarce. The film instead mainly focuses on the psychological metamorphosis of man turning into beast.

Perhaps most jolting to viewers of WW movies is the body count. Or, should I say, the lack thereof. If you're looking for a WW movie that has scene after scene of poor chaps being mauled, this one may not be for you.

This is a well done film if you're looking for a more cerebral type of WW film than the normal fare. As I mentioned, the cast is also a higher calibre than normal. If ever there was a WW story that had a haunting elegance to it, this just might be it."
Michael Butts | Martinsburg, WV USA | 11/06/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Who ever would have thought director Mike Nichols and stars Jack Nicholson and Michelle Pfeiffer would participate in a werewolf movie? WOLF is a howling good movie, though, filled with typical werewolf scares and a penetrating script and sharp performances. Nicholson is perfect as a mealy-mouthed senior editor who is booted by boss Christopher Plummer in favor of his protege, the smarmy James Spader (excellent in his typical style). At the beginning of the film, in an eerily staged sequence, Jack is bitten by a wolf that he has just hit with his Volvo. He notices some changes, particularly in his new aggressive behavior, not to mention an enhanced sense of smell and hearing. Wife Kate Nelligan is having an affair with Spader and this sparks some interesting consequences. A couple of plot twists occur, one we should have seen coming and the other a little more ambiguous, but sensible anyhow.
WOLF is a classy horror film, and notoriously overlooked, but it's a good one!"
Oh Jack!...You're Such An Animal!
L. Shirley | fountain valley, ca United States | 09/21/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This review refers to "Wolf"(VHS edition)...

Howling fun with Jack Nicholson, as he clearly marks his territory in "Wolf" A modern take on the wolfman lore, and a thriller/horror film that makes me jump even though I have seen it several times and already know what's coming up.

Will Randall, Editor in Chief of a huge book publishing firm, is an all around nice guy. So nice in fact, that when he hits a wolf on a dark snowy night, on the highway, he tries to move the dead animal off the road. But, get ready to jump, the wolf is very much alive, bites our guy and heads off into the woods to join his pack.

Randall becomes a new man as he slowly goes through the biggest change of life he'll ever know! His senses become heightened, his sleep habits change, he tends to prowl the streets of New York, and the more suitable terrain of Central Park at night,other animals fear him, he's got a new edge to his personality, and yes things are really getting a bit hairy, as he often wakes with blood on his hands and clothes.

Could our guy be responsible for some vicious murders? Can the girl he has fallen for(Michelle Pfeiffer), keep this guy home at nights? Will Jack be doomed to the animal kingdom forever?
It's a fabulous thrill finding out, as Nicholson pulls off his turn at a wolfman wonderfully, in that great Jack style!

This film might not have had the punch it did, without the great cast and crew. Directed by Mike Nichols, these seasoned and talented actors take us on a real thrill ride. Michelle Pfeiffer, as the bad girl who falls for Will the Wolf, James Spader, you'll love to hate him as Will's nemesis, Kate Nelligan, the unfaithful wife(big mistake!), Christopher Plummer, the boss who is subject to the "new" Will's wrath, and Om Puri, the expert on folklore of the wolf, will all have you glued to the film.There are some great shots of New York, and add Ennio Morricone's award winning music to the mix and you are in for a fine horror film.

To sum up, here's a great quote from the film:

Mary:(Will's secretary)"Is the worm turning, Mr. Randall?"
Will Randall: The worm has turned and it is now packing an Uzi, Mary.

Good stuff...get the popcorn poppin and enjoy....Laurie

for more fun thrills and great horror check out:Tremors"