In 18th Century France, naturalist Grégoire de Fronsac (Samuel Le Bihan) and his American Indian blood brother Mani (Mark Dacascos) are sent to hunt for the mysterious wolf-like beast that has been killing women and children. Fronsac soon meets Jean-François de Morangias (Vincent Cassel), a sour young man who lost an arm at battle, and his sister Marianne (Emilie Dequenne), with whom he falls in love. He visits the local whorehouse where the very beautiful madam Sylvia (Monica Bellucci) appears to have designs on him. But the killings continue and Fronsac starts to have suspicions that the beast has a master.

The film revisits one of the rare French myths, that of the "Beast of Gevaudan".

Southern France in the 1760s, 25 years before the revolution. A terrible creature, a kind of giant wolf, is terrorising the countryside and King Louis XV sends naturalist and adventurer Gregoire de Fronsac (Samuel Le Bihan) to capture it. De Fronsac arrives in Gevaudan accompanied by Mani (Mark Dacascos), an American Indian, and is guardedly welcomed by the local Count (Jean Yanne), and his daughter Marianne (Emilie Dequenne). The Count's son, one-armed Jean-Francois (Vincent Cassel), is more reserved. The hunt begins, but De Fronsac soon becomes aware that he's hunting more than just a mysterious monster. He also finds himself in confrontation with some of the locals.

One of the most expensive films ever made in France, and a huge success there, The Brotherhood of The Wolf is a very strange movie indeed. Directed by Christophe Gans, it borrows liberally from films like Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon and even The Matrix, injecting martial arts fight scenes and over-the-top horror into an 18th century costume drama. It's not the least bit convincing on any level, but it's also quite a lot of fun, in rather a silly way. Le Bihan makes a strapping hero, Cassel provides brooding, if rather obvious, menace, and Monica Bellucci is lovely as a dominatrix with a hidden agenda. The unusual casting of Emilie Dequenne, last seen as the very modern heroine of Rosetta, also works. It's a lavish spectacle, but a totally undisciplined one.


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2 hours 22 min