The Winter Olympics kick off tonight, it’s NBA All-Star Weekend and Valentine’s Day is Sunday, but if you’re like us, you’re going to be first in line tonight to see “The Wolfman” at your local cineplex. The film, which stars Benicio Del Toro and Anthony Hopkins, tells the classic story of a man (Del Toro) dealing with the curse of the werewolf. Del Toro isn’t a sexy werewolf like that Jacob Black kid from “New Moon” — rather, he’s a savage, bloodthirsty beast who is a danger to himself and the people around him. Director Joe Johnston has some familiarity with large beasts (he has previously directed “Jurassic Park III” and “Jumanji”), so if nothing else, the beasties should be delightfully great.
Like any great popcorn flick, “The Wolfman” requires an appropriate video playlist. For unclear reasons, many bands have spent the 21st century obsessing over wolves (both the were and non-were varieties). In fact, it seemed like there was a time where every band on the planet had “Wolf” in their name (Wolfmother, Sea Wolf, AIDS Wolf, Wolf Parade and Wolf Eyes among them). Still more groups just write songs about wolves, like Duran Duran (“Hungry Like the Wolf”) and Shakira (“She Wolf”). In a more metal mood? You’ve got Rob Zombie’s “Superbeast” and Anthrax’s “Belly of the Beast.” Could Beck accuse Del Toro of having the “Devil’s Haircut”? Probably. Should there be a scene in “The Wolfman” where Del Toro growls while Ozzy Osbourne’s “Bark at the Moon” plays in the background? Most certainly.
To properly get yourself prepared for the flick, start your wolf-related journey with TV on the Radio’s “Wolf Like Me,” which features a delightfully creepy video and seems like the soundtrack to a disturbing metamorphosis.