Anybody Feeling Horns-y?
By Lucia Rossi
Be Prepared Harry Potter lovers, Daniel Radcliffe can communicate with snakes…again! Thanks to his devilish horns that is.
After previously being released in the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival, Horns finally made it to American theatres. However, Horns was not released in any Staten Island movie theatres. The closest theatres to go see it in are in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and New Jersey. Paying the toll was worth it for this film.
Horns can be described as dark fantasy, crime fiction, gothic fiction, and thriller, but it contains a wave of other different genres like romance, comedy, horror, mystery and magic. This film plays with myths, religion and fairytales that Director Alexandre Aja couldn’t wait to play with.
The film revolved around Ignatius Perrish, played by Daniel Radcliffe, who is suspected by everyone to have brutally raped and killed his childhood love and girlfriend Merrin Williams, played by Juno Temple. Ig then awakens one morning to find that horns have grown onto his head and have given him powers that make people confess their sins, say what they truly feel, and push them to give into selfish and very animalistic impulses.
The horns also gave him the power to control snakes, influence people to do things that deep down they already want to do, see into people’s past by touching them and make people forget what they said, did and saw when they turn away from the horns. The horns themselves are indestructible. Ig then seeks revenge with the help of his horns to get the truth from his friends, family, and townspeople about what really happened to Merrin and who killed her.
Be aware that this role for Daniel Radcliffe is very different from Harry Potter: even though there is a magical element, he is the protagonist, and his girlfriend in the film is once again a red-head. The film is Canadian, he has an American accent, curses often, has facial hair, and a really saucy sex scene.
Radcliffe said the role was, “deeply emotional and also incredibly outrageous in some ways.”
The plot of the story involving Merrin and Ig’s relationship and her murder comes in full circle with no loose ends. The movie spends a lot of time on flashbacks from their childhood which connected to the events that occurred in the present. Because of the flashbacks, the audience is able to feel sorrow and guilt for Merrin’s demise and it makes the romance more real and believable.
As the film progressed, little by little it gave more details and more depth to the characters. They are very diverse and all cursed in their own ways. One thing you must know is you never find out why exactly Ig got the Horns or what they really are. There is no explanation for them other than Ig’s feelings and curse to God after what happened to Merrin. However, Ig eventually treats the horns as a gift because they are what allowed him to find out who the real killer was and to punish them. This lack of background information was the only major disappointment for me with this film.
Critics however found that the mixing of too many genres made the film messy, so it got 44% on Rotten Tomatoes. Joe Hill, son of Stephen King, wrote the novel Horns and said that Radcliffe’s performance was, “Wrenching, vulnerable, [and] emotionally naked.”