Year of Release: 2011
IMDB Rating: 3.3 / 10
Level of Awful: High
WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
Duck and cover people! Costas Mandylor has a gun and he’s pissed off as all hell! I don’t even know where to start with this one, and not just because we have movies A through E all going at the same time. Werehyenas? Really? Is this what Lionsgate has been reduced to? Who was high enough to think that this would be a good idea? Boiled down to its essence what we have here is an actor capable of a single facial expression, a softcore porn star (Christa Campbell), a black guy, a blonde woman, a gaggle of teenagers, bad CGI and cars’ headlights all over the place. Somehow, along the way, all of these little ingredients were thrown together in a rather foul-tasting soup centred around werehyenas, the very insecure cousin of the werewolf.
Early on in the movie we have our first encounter with both the hyenas and their powerful use of a car’s high beams. Driving along a long and seemingly deserted road a woman and her baby are making their way to visit hubby / daddy. Along the way another car suddenly appears and blinds them with their headlights before attempting a drag race. When they eventually decide to leave her alone she continues her journey, only to have one of her tyres burst, forcing her to do a relatively impressive emergency stop. While trying to change the tyre (without raising the car) the headlights suddenly appear again, which she tries to beat into submission with a little torch. Having lost the headlight battle, the werehyenas promptly decide to eat the woman and her child in a frenzy of terrible computer graphics and the manic laughter one comes to expect from a hyena. The hyenas, however, have made a deadly mistake: they have eaten the wife and child of Costas Mandylor, and shit’s about to get real.
We now enter the world of Crazy Briggs, a rare and elusive werehyena hunter. When the police can’t help Costas Mandylor in his hunt for his family’s killers Crazy Briggs decide to talk to him directly. It turns out Costas Mandylor certainly doesn’t have any trust issues since he immediately believes Crazy Briggs’ story about this group of shape-shifting werehyenas running around in the wilderness hunting down humans, their preferred food (humans: the other white meat). It turns out that the werehyena is a relative of the werewolf and is its African equivalent (this despite the fact that all the werehyenas are white people). Like the normal hyena the pack is led by a matriarch who needs to keep the male members in line and encourage her female offspring to be über-competitive so that, one day, they can take over from mommy. That day is fast approaching, however, as the current matriarch is ill and daughter Wilda is competing to follow in mommy’s paw prints.
By sheer coincidence Costas and Crazy Briggs rescue a blonde woman being attacked by the entire pack one night and, with guns loaded and black outfits at the ready, manage to kill one whole werehyena. Now within 3 minutes you’ll know why this woman has been brought into the movie through a combination of weak storyline and her ability to spell out how she grew up in a very competitive environment where her mother encouraged her to compete against her many, many sisters. Think you’ve got it? Good. Because it was all lost on Costas Mandylor. Thrown in amongst all of this are dark and twisty emo-jocks initiating a baby-faced young man, a Chinese man with a petrol station and several chickens, a group of Latino mechanics involved in a turf war with the emo-jocks, an interracial love story and a moral lesson on what it means to be an American.
You wouldn’t think that so many different things could be brought together to form a cohesive, enjoyable, suspenseful movie. And if you thought that, my friend you were dead right!
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- You don’t need a car seat. You can just throw your child in the back.
- Costas Mandylor doesn’t speak in obvious hints.
- Police don’t need to bag evidence or wear gloves. They can just pick it up and shove it in their pockets.
- Women think you can use a crowbar to remove a tyre.
- Women should always strip before transforming into a hyena.
- Women should always step back in an ordered fashion when a turf war breaks out.