Reviews | Written by Andrew Pollard 13/08/2019

BIG BAD WOLVES

BIG BAD WOLVES / CERT: 18 / DIRECTOR & SCREENPLAY: AHARON KESHALES, NAVOT PAPUSHADO / STARRING: LIOR ASHKENAZI, ROTEM KEINAN, TAZHI GRAD, DVIR BENEDEK / RELEASE DATE: AUGUST 19TH

First released back in 2013, Aharon Keshales and Navot Papushado’s Big Bad Wolves impressed so many with the way it handled an extremely serious topic in a way that’s dark and sinister, yet in a way that is also humourous and that asks questions of its audience. And now, the film is getting a new Blu-ray release.

In terms of plot, the focus of Big Bad Wolves is on a twisted child-killer who is tormenting Israel. First up, we’re introduced to hard-hitting, uncompromising cop Miki (Lior Ashkenazi) as he’s the one tasked with handling this case. Unfortunately for Miki, however, his approach is a little too heavy-handed and he’s suspended after his actions make a mockery of the claims against the case’s prime suspect. Still, determined to make meek and mild Dror (Rotem Keinan) confess, Miki decides to do whatever it takes to prove that Dror is indeed the one behind these vile and heinous acts. And then there’s Gidi (Tazhi Grad), the father of a girl who was tortured by the still-at-large killer. As this narrative plays out, the film poses the question of just who exactly the real victim in all of this is and we see plentiful different angles to the trauma and tragedy at the heart of the tale.

Without trying to sound like we’re leaning too much on hyperbole, Big Bad Wolves is one of the most gripping movies of the past decade. At times, this is an unrelenting, brutal, violent picture, yet there is more often than night a sprinkle of dark humour or a lighter moment waiting just around the corner. Regardless, you’re gripped to this one as soon as the film’s opening few moments play out.

In terms of scale and scope, Big Bad Wolves may well be minimalistic and extremely raw, but this is a movie that is extremely sophisticated in its visuals and in its narrative. Said narrative is constructed magnificently as it throws up questions about morality, justice and guilt – all of which are served up with large dollops of truly shuddering violence at times. The story, of course, is only further helped by a trio of stunning performances from its core cast of Lior Ashkenazi, Rotem Keinan and Tazhi Grad.

Back during its initial release, Big Bad Wolves flew a little under the radar of many genre fans. Now though, here’s hoping this new Blu-ray release can help this remarkable little feature find a wider audience. We said it back in 2013, and we’ll see it again now – if you get the chance to see Big Bad Wolves, eat it up.

Elsewhere on the release, the Last Night at the Empire featurette is a whole load of fun as the film gets taken to FrightFest. The other two featurettes are similarly engaging and entertaining, and then the movie’s theatrical trailer rounds out the Blu-ray.

Special Features: Last Night at the Empire: Big Bad Wolves at FrightFest / Making of Big Bad Wolves / AXS TV: A Look at Big Bad Wolves / Theatrical trailer

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