Busted Knuckles Manly Movie Review: Skinwalkers

Director: James Isaac
Cast: Rhona Mitra, Jason Behr, Elias Koteas, Sarah Carter, Kim Coates, Shawn Roberts, Natassia Malthe and Barbara Gordon.
Rated: PG-13
Running Time: 110 minutes

A few months ago during one of my columns where I imposed my slobbering lust for actress Rhona Mitra on you, I told you about her upcoming horror/action movie, SKINWALKERS. Well, as of last week it’s out and at your local theatre. I ran and saw it before I blinked and they yanked it away.

I can tell you right now if you’re looking for something big and fancy like TRANSFORMERS or SPIDER-MAN this ain’t it. SKINWALKERS knows it’s a B-Movie Monster film and is proud of it. From the retro story crawler filling you in on what you’re about to see to the very well placed music and score, you KNOW you’re seeing a monster movie.

SKINWALKERS is a throwback to the kind of monster movies I used to see at the drive-in in the 1970’s. There’s good and evil and you know the difference. The finish line is set up it’s full-throttle to see who gets there first.

In SKINWALKERS there’s a war going on between some werewolves that see their supernatural powers as a blessing that they can use to bite, claw and dismember anyone that gets on their bad side and others that see it as a curse that keeps them from living a normal “Leave It To Beaver” life.

Heading up the bad group of biker werewolves is Jason Behr, a male-model sociopath with the looks and clothing of Lorenzo Lamas from his TV series RENEGADE. Behr leads a gang of psychotic, motorcycle-riding werewolves on a hunt for 12-year-old Matthew Knight, who can rid the world of the were-curse forever once he turns 13 and there is a red moon. Like in the movie BLADE, he’s a half ?breed. Daddy was the wolfman and momma was Rhona Mitra.

If he can make it to his 13th birthday his power will be able to release uncle Elias Koteas (could play Robert Di Niro’s brother) and his town of friendly, Ned Flanders like wolf-people from their hated condition. Koteas and mother Rhona Mitra just have to keep the boy alive for three days until his birthday and there’s a smart twist that keeps this movie from being just a reason for mayhem, although there’s nothing wrong with that. I won’t spoil that for you. You can wait until you see the movie.

SKINWALKERS isn’t a cheap movie, nor does it look low budget B-Movie. It IS B-Movie meaning that it’s fun. Lots of popcorn, a good comfortable seat and a great way to spend an afternoon or evening. The movie is comfortable with what it is and wears it like a badge of honor. Noted SFX wizard, Stan Winston does the make up for the werewolves and I was rather fond of em’ because they didn’t go for the tired and worn out Mucus Monster look. These are werewolves wearing clothes. The way it should be. If I want to see a big dog tearing people up I’ll rent Cujo.

The dialogue is just what you’d expect from a good old-fashioned monster movie. Tarantino it’s not, so don’t expect it. The expressions and situations are amusing in a serious way. There’s a shootout between the warring factions in the Mayberry like town that was an instant classic. There’s another in a hospital that will leaving you smiling for the right reasons. Noted character actress, Barbara Gordon plays the young boy’s grandmother in the film. Without giving too much away I can say that she has the best role in the movie. Keep your eye on her when you watch this. You’ve never seen her in this kind of role before.

Another pleasant plus to this movie is that all the main female roles are incredible babes. All worthy of being a Busted Knuckles Babe Of The Week. Whoever cast this film has my thanks.

There is a ton of gun play in SKINWALKERS. There must have been a fire sale on gun cocking special sound effects when this movie was made. I felt like I was at home.

The film borrows from other films that you know well. From Terminator, The Howling, Night Of The Living Dead, Vampires, Evil Dead and others. Notice I said borrows and not stolen. There’s a difference.

Know this: The film was originally to be R rated. To get a wider distribution and draw in a more family friendly viewers the film was edited to PG-13 for theatrical release. When watching the movie you can tell where the sex and gore was tempered. It’s not choppy, but you can tell. That means that unless you are in lust with Rhona Mitra like me or just love monsters movies, wait until it’s on DVD to see the full unrated version. For me it was well worth the matinee price to see it ahead of time. It’ll only enhance my seeing it on DVD. My 24 year old son, Nick went and saw it with me. His quote after the film summed up the PG-13 rating. “That’s a shame?Rhona Mitra never took her clothes off.”

During the movie he also commented that one of the werewolf biker chick looked like my comic book creation Wynonna Earp. I was smiling thinking the same thing.

So if you miss SKINWALKERS at the theatre, don’t worry, you’ll have something to look forward to on DVD in a couple of months. By the way, the movie ends with just enough of the door open for a sequel. I’m there!

Busted Knuckles Manly Cover Of The Week

Werewolf By Night #24
Marvel Comics, December 1974
Art By Gil Kane & Al Milgrom

While on the subject of werewolves, here’s a great manly cover that covers it all?werewolf, bad guy, thugs, and a beautiful damsel in distress. Lots of action as well as great 70s cover blurbs. It’s no wonder these covers continue to stand the test of time where today’s comic book covers are quickly forgotten.

Busted Knuckles Babe Of The Week

Rhona Mitra (Are you really surprised??)

Yes, Rhona has been the Busted Knuckles Babe Of The Week before, but it’s my column and I can do whatever I want? and I want Rhona!

It’s good to be me.

The Roundup

As you can tell, this week’s Busted Knuckles has had a hairy, howler of a theme. Nothing wrong with that from time to time. I figure if you’re gonna talk werewolves you might as well talk about the manly ones. With that, I leave you with some very manly werewolf images.

Remember: “Even a man who is pure in heart and says his prayers by night, may become a wolf when the wolfbane blooms and the autumn moon is bright”.

Guess it’s a good thing my heart ain’t so pure.

Your amigo,

Beau Smith
The Flying Fist Ranch
P.O. Box 706
Ceredo, WV. 25507

Prove your manhood by visiting Beau at the Flying Fists Forum!

About The Author

Beau Smith

Beau Smith is a writer for Comics Bulletin