A young man’s life is set to change forever in this French coming of age film that meets werewolf film as well, but not how you think.
Jacky Caillou is an aspiring musician who has always following in the steps of his grandmother Gisele. A known healer, Gisele has earned a major reputation as townsfolk believe in her healing powers. When Jacky trains in the art of healing, things don’t bode as well at first. However, upon the arrival of a young woman, Elsa, things are about to change for Jacky. But not necessarily in a good way.
Elsa sports a mysterious rash on her back and no one, not even doctors know what it is. When Gisele mysteriously dies the following day, Jacky is heartbroken. However, upon entering the forest, he sees an injured bird and soon discovers he has inherited his grandmother’s healing powers. He attempts to heal Elsa and Jacky soon discovers she has the ability to transform into a wolf. Jacky decides to try to protect her when she starts killing livestock in the area and the locals want to hunt her down.
Co-written and directed by Lucas Delangle, from the plot, it sounds like a meshing of werewolf movie and coming of age film. For the former, it has a werewolf in it, but it’s not the titular character. The titular Jacky is actually the one who ends up somewhat falling for her and trying to protect her. The problem is that the film is not exactly a horror film but more of the coming of age bit and while it could work in some ways, it just feels kind of boring here.
The direction is a bit slow-paced and there aren’t really any transformation sequences when we see Elsa in wolf form. The wolf is quite adorable to see, even if it is responsible for the murder of livestock. However, had they taken the werewolf angle to a different direction, it might have fared better instead of being this slow paced film about a teen who is coming to grips with the loss of his grandmother and his numerous attempts to use his new powers to heal Elsa from her lycanthropy.
Lead actors Thomas Parigi and Lou Lampros make the best of what they have to work with. Lampros especially makes the film watchable with her performance of Elsa, but Parigi comes off a little bland in his role as the titular Jacky. It looks like half the time, he seems a bit bored and it doesn’t bode well in a film of this nature.
The Strange Case of Jacky Caillou has potential and does have some good points, but it feels very slow and with a lead that looks bored half the time, it ultimately seems bland compared to other coming of age and werewolf films.
WFG RATING: C-
Dark Star Pictures present a Les Film du Clan production in association with Cinemage 16 and Micro Climat. Director: Lucas Delangle. Producers: Charles Philippe and Lucile Ric. Writers: Lucas Delangle and Olivier Strauss. Cinematography: Mathieu Gaudet. Editing: Clement Pinteaux.
Cast: Thomas Parigi, Lou Lampros, Edwige Blondeau, Jean-Louis Coulloc’h, Romain Laguna, Georges Isnard, Sivan Garavagno, Jean-Marc Ravera.
The film comes to VOD on April 11.