After two years of production, over 100 days of shooting, and one major reshoot complete with recasted roles plus a recut PG-13 theatrical release, you could say that Wes Craven's Cursed literally was damned from the get-go. The horror maestro's re-teaming with Scream scribe Kevin Williamson to tackle the then-hot werewolf genre could have been interesting, but thanks to major production hurdles thrown by Dimension and the dreaded Weinstein brothers, the flick saw both critical and commercial failure like the studio had never seen. It's always fishy when Hollywood makes a movie about itself, and this production is no different. While Craven broke through the post-modern wall successfully with New Nightmare, here the in-jokes just feel cheap and worn out. Williamson's script, rewritten throughout shooting, is lazy and dime-store dumb, while the director does little to nothing to inject it with his usual flair. It's true that the R-rated cut does deliver a handful of gory goods, but the creative spark is lacking, as is the fun. The werewolf isn't something to write home about either, which is sad considering that effects wizard Rick Baker (An American Werewolf in London) once worked on the project. Once again, the line between competent practical effects and shoddy CG work is evident anytime the dreaded beast shows up, though frankly, it could have used another tweak or two in the design process. The werewolf does flip somebody the bird near the end, though it might as well be directed toward the audience at that point. Tedious and unfunny, with cheap fake-out scares that wear out their welcome as soon as they show up, Cursed lives up to its name and then some.
by Jeremy Wheeler review