Blood and Chocolate
As a fan of the whole fairy-tale come/genre, I was ‘recommended’ this on Amazon so thought I’d give it a try, despite the poor reviews. And I have to say it wasn’t half bad.
The tale revolves around a young woman called Vivian (Agnes Bruckner) whose family were brutally murdered at their home in the Rocky Mountains when she was a child. She has been brought up ever since by her aunt and now lives in Bucharest. We find out early on that Vivian belongs to a pack of “loup garoux” – she has the ability to change into a wolf at will. Unlike werewolves, the loup garoux can control when they change into their furry counterparts.
By day, Vivian works in a chocolate shop. By night, she prowls around Bucharest and does her best to ignore the treatment she receives at the hands of her cousin Rafe (Bryan Dick). He teases her about her betrothal to the leader of their pack; Gabriel (Olivier Martinez). Their leader must take a new wife every seven years, and Vivian is tipped to be the next one, however reluctant she may be.
Different to the rest of the pack, Vivian has sworn never to kill a human, and she spends much of her time alone. A chance meeting in a church changes her life forever. She meets the artist Aidan (Hugh Dancy), who has a fascination with the legendary loup garoux, and knows a great deal about them… except that they aren’t extinct, or indeed, that the girl he lusts after is one of them.
Knowing the dangers, Vivian ignores and avoids Aidan, but he pursues her, until eventually she relents. They begin an illicit relationship, meeting in secret, away from the prying eyes of her family. Inevitably the rest of the pack find out what is going on, and fearing their secret will be exposed, they must take drastic action.
I thought this was a pretty good film. It’s far from my favourite, I’ve seen better in this genre, but I liked the storyline, though felt many parts of it could have been expanded on. In the movie, the church which is almost a shrine to the loup garoux is really glossed over, the scene doesn’t go into much detail so you’re left putting the pieces together. The romance between Vivian and Aiden could have been drawn out more too. It almost seems as if they go on a couple of dates and all of a sudden she’s announcing she’s in love with him. It just seemed a little rushed. I realise the constraints of film but it wouldn’t have hurt to expanded on this a little.
Overall, the film was full of suitable creepiness (I’d say more ‘creepy’ than scary) and action for me to recommend it to those interested in the genre. One thing I really didn’t like was when the pack made the transition from human into wolf; I thought the special effects were incredibly cheesy and they really ruined the whole atmosphere of scenes which were supposed to be brutal and frightening. But as I said, I’d recommend this. You might want to rent it rather than buy it though 😉