Danny Dunlop’s debut feature 'Wolves' is a hidden gem for every mystery lover

By Jigar Saraswat

Published: Wed 4 Jan 2023, 5:23 PM

In the last year, a spate of true crime shows flooded OTT platforms and Hollywood screens, turning us all into armchair detectives and pop criminal psychologists. So we’re going to start this article off by quoting a line from the recent HorrorBuzz.com review of Wolves: "A fascinating character study, a unique tale of loneliness that also examines the capacity for violence that may exist in all of us. True crime fans should give this one a watch.

Wolves is a case of real-life inspiring reel life, and that makes it even more intriguing. Danny Dunlop who wrote, directed and shot the film, based the movie on an unsolved case that took place in his hometown in Canada between 2015-2017. During these years, more than 20 mutilated and dismembered corpses of wild animals were left in public. Authorities believed it was a serial killer preparing to escalate to human victims, but the case was never solved.

Dunlop’s protagonist is a nameless recluse who is experiencing one of the lowest phases of his life. With no girlfriend, having just lost his job, and without any friends, the protagonist becomes intrigued when the psychological profiling of the killer is unnervingly similar to his own – a young white male who has distanced himself from society.

Propelled into action, the protagonist, played by Mark Nocent, begins to privately try solving the case, attempting to stop the killer from moving to human victims.

The film is shot in a bleak Ontario winter, with eerie winter landscapes that reflect the isolation of the protagonist. With stunning drone shots of desolate suburbia in the snow, a gritty colour palette of white, black, and grey, and close-ups of actors, Dunlop gives the viewer the space and stillness to interpret the silences for oneself.

HorrorFuel.com said: “Wolves is a discomfiting, highly recommended slice of genre cinema.”

The film stars lead actor Mark Nocent, Jake Raymond (American Gothic), Allen Dobrescu (FX’s Fargo Season 2), Tiffany Blom (Age of the Living Dead), Chad Hamilton-Andrews (Hell on Wheels), and LawreneDenkers (The Duchess of Cancun). Hollywood star Holt McCallany of Fight Club fame lends his distinctive voice to the role of Westview Country Supply Manager. Wolves is produced by Kevin Tuck, Jon McLaren, Sara Mitich, and Rajiv Whabi.

Wolves was selected for screening at the Cinequest Film and Creativity Festival in April 2022, where it was lauded as “…a haunting tale of loneliness”.

It made waves in Dances With Films, the Portland Film Festival, Regina International Film Festival, Atlanta Horror Film Festival, Forest City Film Festival, and the Windsor International Film Festival. We highly recommend bookmarking this as a winter must-watch.

— Jigar Saraswat is a freelance content writer.

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