A teenage girl’s coming-of-age arrives with a terrifying twist in this spellbinding take on the werewolf legend. Since birth, Anna (Bel Powley) has been raised in isolation by a man she knows only as Daddy (Brad Dourif, Child’s Play). He has done everything possible to conceal the truth about her origins from her. But when the teenage Anna is suddenly thrust into the real world under the protection of no-nonsense police officer Ellen (Liv Tyler, The Strangers), it soon becomes clear that she is far from ordinary. Unable to adjust to a normal life, Anna finds herself drawn instead to the wild freedom of the forest while struggling to resist the growing bloodlust that has awakened inside her. This moodily atmospheric thriller combines supernatural scares with a myth-like tale of self-discovery.
One of my friends talked me into seeing this with her and I have to admit it, I rather liked the film. I was actually a little surprised by just how much in fact. Wildling is about a girl who is different and a bit scary. She never knew what she was and she is very scared and confused. We are basically learning right along with her as she goes through the changes that in fact, change her. The film is shrouded in mystery, it’s dark and bloody, sometimes very shocking, and beautifully folkloric as our protagonist Anna’s uncontrollably monstrous existence are fleshed out. We see her when she is a young girl being told stories by an otherwise unnamed Daddy, who seems to be holding her captive in a rundown, barred-window room. We soon learn that she is the last one left of her kind, and she must be protected from the ravages of the horrific ‘wildling’ that lives out in the woods.
Anna is told that she has to stay inside in order to remain safe, and she does as she is told, drawing pictures and hanging them all over the walls, reading among the many books piled around the room, enjoying all of her birthdays and even caring for her pet. She also receives some sort of medication that’s contained in needles as they are administered into her stomach. We soon realize that she is receiving lots of needle-shots in the stomach when she pulls up ner night-shirt. Suddenly her Daddy is gone, and a Police Officer named Cooper, played by Liv Tyler, enters the room out of nowhere and takes Anna in to investigate the circumstances of her captivity over the past 16 years.
We soon realize that with her Daddy not being around, no one who knows anything about Anna or what is wrong with her…not even she knows. Curiosity sets in when she starts to sense that there might be someone else out there that can tell her. We also begin to wonder if her Daddy had been correct all these years by keeping Anna locked up and safe.
To me, Wildling was a solid horror film with a great story to it, and I actually wish the movie had been longer. By the ending of this film, I’m left to wonder if a sequel or prequel is in the works. I know for a fact that I’d be completely interested if so. All of the characters, the acting, production, and special effects were very good indeed. The entire make up of this movie is incredible, giving us a wildling that is both beautiful yet so undeniably different and therefore, scary, for we know the horrible power she holds within when threatened. If you plan to give it a watch, stay clear of trailers and synopses. If you’re like me, too much information ruins a movie experience. Give it a go, you might find yourself just as pleased and surprised as I was.
Release Date: April 13, 2018
Runtime: 1 hour, 32 minutes
Genre: Horror, Fantasy, Drama
Studio: Shout! Factory
Starring: Liv Tyler, Brad Dourif, Bel Powley
MPAA Rated: R
Directors: Fritz Böhm
Reviewed by: Mad Hatter
Our Rating: 3.6 /5
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