CRY_WOLF

poster

I had a scary realization the other day when I added this movie to my Netflix queue. I had been meaning to watch this movie since it was in theaters. Cry_Wolf came out in 2005. That was NINE years ago! I was in middle school! I guess I really did have a thing for horror at a young age. I’m feeling so old right now. After almost a decade it was time to see if Cry_Wolf was really worth taking in after such a long gap in time.

There is a murderer on the loose and the trail leads to Westlake Preparatory Academy. Inspired by the real killer, a group of bored rich kids decide to play a dangerous game. They type up a fake e-mail with made up details about the killer, naming him “The Wolf”. The e-mail gets spread around campus and soon everyone is talking about it. Eventually, it begins to seem like the creation of the group’s fantasy has somehow been brought to life as a man matching the faux description is spotted around Westlake. It’s up to the group to figure out who the threat is before it’s too late.

I don’t understand how they could think this “game” is fun and I don’t know what they were planning to do with it after creating the chain letter. The group continues to make stupid decisions compromising each others safety for “fun”. The twists and turns start coming from all sides and fake-outs are aplenty. The plot of this teen scream seems oddly familiar, especially towards the ending revelation(s). It took me back to the classic mystery of Scream, which premiered NINE years before Cry_Wolf (It’s all starting to make sense!). Unfortunately, the hazardous activities these teenagers carelessly indulge in makes no sense to me. Why don’t they go get drunk or play video games like the students of today.

Well, it was 2005, and during the advent of AOL’s Instant Messenger Cry_Wolf decided to wrap itself around the cool new idea of kids constantly IMing each other. AIM’s popularity was beginning to peak and AOL decided to shell out the bucks in order to plaster their ads all over this movie. The Wolf continuously harasses the group on AIM. You can’t go 10 minutes without seeing the jolly jumping yellow dude and hearing *buh-BING*.

AOL-Instant-Messenger

Gratuitous advertising aside, I wasn’t totally disappointed with Cry_Wolf. There are a few stand out actors within the supporting cast, including Jared Padalecki (Supernatural), Jon Bon Jovi, Lindy Booth (Dawn of the Dead) and even a small appearance by a British-accented Gary Cole (Office Space). I particularly enjoyed Booth’s temptress who was very hard to read.

The writers had a good idea going in their script but I felt nauseous after too many plot twists and too many endings stacked up on top of each other. For a horror movie there isn’t a single scare that comes to mind and there is a long wait before any blood is spilled. I will recommend Cry_Wolf if you can handle being jerked around by the plot for more than a while, but if you haven’t seen Scream yet watch that instead.

★★★☆☆

3 *buh-BING*s out of 5

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