Project Wolf Hunting (2022)
Project Wolf Hunting (2022)

Project Wolf Hunting (2022) Movie Review

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This is quite possibly the bloodiest movie I’ve ever seen. Project Wolf Hunting has been making its way through the festival circuit, and it is going to be arriving in theatres very soon. But is this violent bloodbath worth a watch? In order to bring infamous criminals from the Philippines to South Korea, Korean authorities take over a cargo freighter, and a bunch of bad people board the Titanic.

They are escorted by two dozen hardened detectives and the vigilant oversight of a hotheaded Coast Guard captain. Despite the heavy security, a plot to seize control of the ship percolates among the prisoners and soon boils over. But neither the cops nor the cons know that they aren’t the freighter’s only cargo. So this starts out fairly rote with a story arc that feels like it’s obvious and predictable.

We can tell almost from the very beginning that as the boatload of convicts is being transferred via a cargo freighter, a plan to break free is imminent. I mean, the looks between the characters are just unmistakable. And the movie doesn’t really do anything to obscure this trajectory. Now, there’s extreme violence that breaks out as the inmates work to overtake the ship. And this violence is abrupt and sudden. At first, there is little hesitation in people’s hearts about killing others. And the level of brutality that’s showcased is impressive and raw. Now, every character in this is a stranger.

There’s very little character development provided. I mean, as the film progresses, mostly in the third act, we do get some backstory on a couple of the characters. What’s impressive  though, is that there were actually a few that I started to have some concern for. I mean, it didn’t matter which side of the law they were on. And I think that speaks to the emotion that the actors were able to convey in their performances.

There’s a tonne going on, and there’s barely any downtime, so to have moments where characters can stand out in the melee, I think it’s impressive. And the action is also very impressive. Because this takes place on a ship, there aren’t many areas that aren’t cramped, meaning that there are a lot of close-quarters fights that are made up of gunfights, martial arts, and then straight hand-to-hand battles. There’s so much excitement contained, and once the action starts, it doesn’t really stop. And because there’s not really any place to escape to—I mean, they’re on a ship in the middle of the sea—unless somebody really wants to just take a header off the side into the ocean, they’ve got to either find a spot to hide or join the fray.

And this creates a tonne of anxious urgency within the storytelling. I mean, there’s kind of a ticking clock, but it’s only the countdown of the remaining potential victims. Okay, but then how does this hold the attention for 2 hours? I mean, the quick pace helps to keep the story progressing. But there is another element to the story that turns itself on its head. Now we do get a hint of what could be going on in the grander scheme, but it’s very vague. And then Hell is unleashed. And then what was already an incredibly brutal film turns it up way past 11 and brings on a level of bloody mayhem that’s really hard to compare with anything else. The practical effects in this are outstanding, to say the least. I mean, it’s easy to just pour blood all over the place.

But when we see blood spurt from random wounds and orifices on every victim, it’s impressive to not see the source of those pumping spurts. It’s not like we can see tubes. Now, I mean, some places I can guess how they accomplished the gushing blood, but then others… I have zero clue. I mean, there’s just blood pouring out, and good gravy, there is a tonne of blood. Now, if IMDB is accurate, it states that two and a half tonnes of blood were used in this production. I mean, that’s 5,000 pounds of liquid just free-flowing through the set.

Now, I like the lore that’s at play within the story. But for as deep as it could go, with some of the complexities that are introduced, the story stays very surface-level. There are some details given within a backstory, but this feels like it’s really just an incredibly rich story that only skims the surface of what’s really involved. But that being said, this does feel like it’s set up for a sequel where more of the backstory could be uncovered.

And while that may be asking too much of audiences, I believe the film is having so much fun with the chaos that the lack of depth isn’t as noticeable as it could be if the action wasn’t so engaging. Probably my only other complaint or negative is how so many of the characters, when confronted with extreme and imminent danger, hesitate to act. and this is after already seeing what carnage can happen. They still don’t act in an immediate manner. I mean, it’s frustrating, but it does allow some conveniences to occur, which then helps to keep the action level pretty high. This is a crazy ride of a film.

I know a lot of it, up to a certain point, is very predictable. But then the story unleashes craziness, and a story that was already filled with carnage somehow figures out how to pile it on even more. The story is a bit thin, but there is a hint of more to come. So if you’re looking for an all-out violent viewing, I mean, you’re not going to want to miss this. Overall, Project Wolf Hunting takes a simple, predictable plot with a lot of scary bloodshed and makes it a lot worse, making a tense storyline that is meant to both interest and disgust.

The action sequences are harrowing and the practical effects are spectacular, combining to create scenes that can make you cheer, grunt, and wince through half-closed eyes. The story is rather thin in spots with very little character development, but it leaves the audience hopeful that there’s more to be told in a subsequent chapter. There’s sex, nakedness, a lot of bad language, and horrible, bloody, and gruesome violence almost all the time. I give Project Wolf Hunting four out of five couches. Are you ready for some old-school ultraviolence? Let me know in the comments below.

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