The horror genre has a reputation for being a very male area, and the horror films we see on a regular basis rarely disprove this. When the Canadian teen horror film Gingersnaps broke the shackles almost two decades ago, it was a great relief.
This is when female horror fans were given the attention they deserved, and the picture might be considered a feminist horror film. Ginger and Brigitte are teen sisters who live in a fictional Toronto suburb.
Ginger is attacked by a werewolf, and her transformation occurs on the first day of her menstrual cycle. This was a novel experience for female viewers, and the fact that the otherworldly creature felt the same emotions as they did was powerful.
Because of its limited release, the film did not achieve the intended commercial success when it was released. However, among the horror films of the time, it was certainly a standout. Scream had set the bar for the slasher genre a few years before, and films like American Psycho, Final Destination, and The Cell kept things intriguing after that.
Ginger Snaps dared to be different at this period, and the strategy paid out in the end. Even though the picture only made a measly $500,00 at the box office, the DVD boom assured that it established a sizable fan base. The film was also praised by critics, with many hailing it as a “clever” and “original” horror film.
Females made up the majority of the film’s cult following, and this trend continued with the sequel and prequel films released in 2004. While the female fandom was particularly enthusiastic about this film, others were equally enthusiastic, and Ginger Snaps went on to become a pioneering series. We’ll teach you everything you need to know about the series in this video, as well as critique the films that promised so much fun back in the day.
It all starts with a mother discovering her dog’s mangled carcass on her lawn in a tiny suburban area. Following the gruesome scenes, we meet Brigitte and Ginger, two sisters who are death-obsessed. Trina’s friend overhears the sisters discussing the possibility of her classmate’s death and informs her.
Trina shoves Brigitte into the remains of a dog that was purportedly slain by the Beast of Bailey Downs, a monster terrorising the town’s canines. Following Trina’s prank, the siblings plan to teach her a lesson by seizing her dog and claiming the beast was responsible for its death.
When Brigitte and Ginger come across a mutilated corpse of a dog, they think about taking it to Trina to convince her that it is her pet dog. However, when they try to pick it up, a leg of the carcass snaps and Ginger is bloodied.
But the blood is also because of her first menstrual cycle. This is when the Beast of Bailey Downs suddenly attacks Ginger and drags her into the woods. Brigitte manages to rescue her, and while they run away, a van driven by Sam hits the monster and kills it.
Brigitte notices that Ginger’s wounds are healing quickly, but she is hesitant to seek medical attention fearing their mother would find out. In the days ahead, Ginger will undergo several adjustments. She starts growing hair from her wounds, bleeds profusely from her period, and seems to be desperately inclined towards Jason.
They even have unprotected sex and we can see spurts of violence in Ginger as she kills a neighbor’s dog. Brigitte is worried about these changes in Ginger and she consults Sam for some help.
Sam deduces that the beast was a lycanthrope and believes that Ginger could be cured with a ring made of pure silver. Brigitte tries unsuccessfully to persuade Ginger to have her navel pierced with the ring, but she is unsuccessful.
Brigitte warns Ginger against stepping out of the house, but she remains defiant. They visit Sam again, hoping for a cure, who suggests the use of monkshood this time. However, Ginger isn’t too happy with the idea and accuses Sam of wanting to have sex with Brigitte.
She storms off, but Brigitte takes her mother’s monkshood and develops a remedy with Sam. As she tries to track down Ginger, she is attacked by Jason who had been transformed after his interaction with Ginger. She uses the cure on him and watches it being effective.
Brigitte discovers Sam being seduced by Ginger and breaks his arm when he rejects her advances. Without a way out, Brigitte becomes infected, and Sam uses a shovel to knock Ginger out. Ginger fully transforms into a werewolf as they attempt to transport her to the residence where she can be cured.
In front of Brigitte, she mutilates and murders Sam. As Ginger-wolf stalks her, Brigitte clutches the cure in one hand and a knife in the other. When it lunges at her, she uses the knife instead of the cure to stab it. Brigitte weeps for her sister as the Ginger-Wolf slowly stops breathing at the end of the film.
Our Take on the movie
Ginger Snaps is a unique horror movie that touches the audience emotionally. It is an outstanding werewolf flick, up there with the best. John Fawcett proves himself to be a competent director and the cast does well to support his vision.
The lead actresses, Katharine Isabelle and Emily Perkins, are particularly brilliant in their roles as the disturbed sisters. The producers couldn’t find someone fit for the role and the hunt took them as long as six months. Funnily enough, Emily and Katharine auditioned the same day and got the parts.
Everything in the story is unique and unpredictable, which adds to the enjoyment of watching it. It’s multi-dimensional, with some great characters, and it does a good job of portraying the growing pains of adolescence as well as the physical changes brought on by the lycanthropic condition.
The plot is extremely unpleasant, and there are several scenes that will make your skin crawl. Ginger Snaps is a dark metaphor for adolescence in many respects, and the morbid sisters are the agents who convey the heaviness of this period.
We enjoyed how the creators synchronised Ginger’s physical changes with the ones that occurred after she was sick. She goes through mood swings, bleeding, hairy legs, and Karen Walton’s intelligent script does the trick.
Paul Jones leads the special effects crew, which brings experience from films like Wolf Girl and Dracula 2000. The visual effects are excellent, and the wolf’s design leaves little to be desired.
We don’t mind that the director preferred to use prosthetics and makeup over CGI. Despite avoiding the clichés of its rivals, this whimsical alternative adolescent monster film manages to be one of the darkest werewolf films ever filmed.
Ginger Snaps 2: Unleashed
The tale takes up where the first one left off in this sequel to the first Ginger Snaps film. Brigitte, who has been infected, is doing everything she can to avoid the consequences. She does everything from shaving off unwanted hair to cutting her arm with a scalpel to halt the infection using the aforestatedmonkshood extract.
Ginger, on the other hand, returns frequently as an apparition and warns her that monkhood can only slow the process, not stop it. Brigitte discovers a male werewolf chasing her after injecting herself with a second dosage of monkshood. She packs and tries to leave quickly, but is interrupted by the flirtatious library attendant who has brought her the books she checked out earlier.
The effects of the second monkshood injection are toxic on Brigitte and the library attendant Jeremy tries to take her to a hospital. However, the male werewolf attacks him and mauls him to death. Brigitte collapses in the snow after trying to get away.
She wakes up to find herself in a rehab clinic. All her pleadings to be released fall on deaf ears as Alice, the director of the clinic, refuses to release her. Brigitte constantly monitors her healing rate and to her shock, she finds out that both her transformation and her healing rate have been fastened.
Ginger keeps appearing and ridicules Brigitte for her growing craving for violence and sex, just like Ginger once had! Her fantasies increase by the day, and she is almost driven to the verge of killing herself.
Tyler, a member of the rehab staff, makes some unwanted overtures toward Brigitte, offering her a supply of monkhood if she agrees to his demands. When a girl named Ghost overhears the staff discussing Brigitte’s monkshood addiction while visiting her burn sufferer grandmother, she realises her deep dark secret.
Ghost is convinced of Brigitte’s lycanthropic origins after noticing her ears have turned sharp. She tries to assist Brigitte with a supply of monkshood, but Tyler refuses. As the rate of metamorphosis accelerates, Brigitte becomes desperate for a monkshood injection and allows Tyler to administer it to her.
The male werewolf that was stalking Brigitte attacks them and they make an escape plan through the air vents to reach the basement. They encounter an addict in the basement and the male werewolf attacks and kills her. Brigitte tries to fight the werewolf but she is injured in the tussle. Surprisingly, her wounds heal swiftly, indicating a rapid change.
Brigitte does something inconceivable when she consumes a deer that was injured in a hunt when Ghost takes her to her grandmother’s house. They arrange a meeting with Tyler at a petrol station to obtain more monkshood when they notice the virus is growing too quickly. When they arrive, they find the gas station employee dead and they quickly retreat with Tyler.
The monkshood injection, however, doesn’t quite work as planned and Brigitte’s body rejects it violently. Tyler panics and calls Alice, but Ghost doesn’t like Tyler hogging the limelight. She falsely makes Brigitte believe that Tyler abused her, and gets her to lock him up outside. The werewolf on the loose kills Tyler.
When Alice arrives, everything changes dramatically. Ghost had been lying the entire time and had burned her grandmother herself, it is revealed. In the midst of the chaos, the werewolf manages to breach through a window, luring Brigitte into a chamber.
The werewolf is impaled by a booby-trapped mattress while they fight in the basement. Brigitte’s transformation is almost complete when Ghost kills Alice with a hammer. She asks Ghost to assassinate her before it’s too late, but Ghost appears to have other ideas.
She locks Brigitte in the basement and we see her illustrating a comic book where she has a powerful werewolf as her pet. With Brigitte getting stronger by the day, Ghost can now unleash her on her enemies. The movie ends as we see the doorbell ring and Ghost getting ready to welcome someone home!
Our Views on the movie
How often does a sequel live up to its predecessor? Ginger Snaps II is a well-deserved sequel, as unusual as that may be. Brigitte is infected with the same sickness that killed her sister Ginger in the gripping tale.Our Views on the movie:
She, on the other hand, takes it much better and attempts to fight the transformation. The werewolf mythos takes a unique turn, and we enjoyed the fast-paced plot that kept our eyes riveted to the screen throughout. This time, we must mention the special effects because they are a big advance over the previous film.
Werewolf attacks were more savage and bloody, and werewolf drawings were far more detailed. If you are someone who finds gore and self-mutilation too much to handle, this might not be your cup of tea.
The director Brett Sullivan keeps the tension in the narrative and the acting performances are terrific once again. Emily Perkins delivers another convincing performance, and the others are above-par in their respective roles.
The raunchy storylines are enhanced by the forceful dark comedy, making it well worth your time. The setting was carefully chosen by the filmmakers, and the scenes are placed in great horror film-like places, ranging from rehabs to asylums. In reality, the facility’s decaying area was a real-life location where a mental hospital had been abandoned.
To boost the spooky factor, they used it just as they found it. There are several unsettling moments, such as when Ghost interacts with her grandmother and when the werewolf appears unexpectedly. We were perplexed by the final twist surrounding Ghost. We would have loved it more if they revealed the identity of the male werewolf.
If you have watched the original and loved it, there is no reason you wouldn’t like this dark and disturbing sequel.
Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning
A brief history of the Northern Legion Trading Company is presented first. Every spring, a group of them leaves the fort and travels to Hudson Bay to trade pelts for winter supplies. However, no one returned from this commercial expedition in 1815.
We’ve advanced about a century and see Ginger and Brigitte, two sisters, wandering in the Canadian woods on their horse.
They stumble upon an abandoned camp in the middle of nowhere and it seems like the camp had come under attack. An elderly Indian woman gives each of them a necklace with a bird’s skull and warns them that unless they kill the boy, one of the sisters will kill the other. Their horse is suddenly scared of something and runs away.
Brigitte gets her foot caught in a trap placed by an Indian hunter as they try to track it down. Initially, the sisters believe the hunter is a threat, but he releases Brigitte and leads them to Fort Bailey. They seek refuge in the fort, and Ginger explains that they are the daughters of a trader, and that they intend to sail east.
However, because the fort has been under siege by werewolves, everyone in the fort is wary of them. The doctor, Murphy, inspects them and clears them as safe. It still doesn’t eliminate the fears in others and Reverend Gilbert is particularly averse to the idea of having them there. The girls are given a strange room that has toy wolves and soldiers in a fighting stance.
That very night, a strange voice awakens Ginger, and she goes out to investigate. She finds the source to be a bolted room and a deformed boy bites her and runs away. When they try to leave the garrison, James stops them, and during their fight the werewolves attack.
However, the Indian hunter comes just in time to save them from its attack. However, Ginger starts bleeding from the nose which is a sign that she has been infected. The sisters find out that the mysterious deformed boy was actually fellow member Wallace’s son and the others think him to be dead. Wallace strikes a deal with the sisters regarding keeping them safe in return for their silence on his son.
Ginger, on the other hand, is dead set on finding and killing the youngster, just as the Indian woman had said. Wallace murders his own son when he is ultimately apprehended. The sisters, on the other hand, have been forced to leave and are in desperate need of treatment. They travel to the hunter’s cave, where they discover that their coming had been predicted.
Brigitte is forced into a trance and has odd visions of her sister being hunted down by the hunter. The hunter, on the other hand, leads her to the fortress and assures her that Ginger is secure.
Brigitte is being held captive at the fort, and Reverend Gilbert intends to burn her alive. Wallace thwarts his plans, and Ginger reappears with all of the werewolves, slaughtering everyone in the area.
The hunter pleads with Brigitte to kill her sister, but she kills him instead. Now, all that is left is Brigitte and Ginger. There are back in the woods where it all began, huddling together in the cold. Brigitte infects herself and both sisters are doomed to be werewolves!
Our Analysis of the prequel
First and foremost, despite the fact that it is referred to as a precursor, it is, without a doubt, their prior existence. Both the sequel and the prequel have completely separate plots, with the only similarities being in the concept and characterization.
The clever script that made the previous two installments so engaging is missing from this episode of the inventive and brilliant series. It is not a bad picture by any means, but the dark comedy is lacking, which may be disappointing to people who have enjoyed such films in the past.
In terms of special effects, the animals in the final sequences appear to be quite impressive. The sets are well-prepared to suit the timeline and we loved the gloomy atmosphere that prevailed throughout. The cast for the two sisters has been retained and Katherine Isabelle and Emily Perkins do not disappoint. This film, however, comes with its share of flaws.
It is sometimes a case of too many characters spoiling the story. We believe that there could have been more explanation for the way some of these individuals met their ends. The music that was so good in the previous two movies is a forgettable experience this time.
The dialoguecan be a tad irritating and Ginger’s one-liners and cussing seem out of place, especially the parts where the characters casually switch from their 18th-century vocabulary to sudden modern one-liners.
We enjoyed Ginger Snaps Back the most, but it is still our least favourite of the three. Perhaps we had set our sights a little too high.
Future of the Franchise
We wouldn’t want to send you go without some good news, would we? Clearly, the Ginger Snaps brand has had a long and fruitful relationship with horror enthusiasts. It would be a pity if the amazing stories and concept were not utilized or recreated! According to reports, Sid Gentle Flicks, the production firm behind Killing Eve, is now collaborating with the producers of the original Ginger Snaps films on a TV version.
Anna-MariaSsemuyaba will write the series, while John Fawcett, who directed the original film, will return as an executive producer.. She has spoken about her love for the franchise and revealed that the incisive portrayal of the ecstasy, agony, and unbridled rage of a teenage girl fascinated her. Having worked on the series Guerilla and Upload, we expect her to keep up the quality content.
Those of you who have watched Killing Eve are well aware of its dark comedic tone and strong feminist outlook. The theme is certainly identical for Ginger Snaps and we can’t wait to see them execute the horror classic in the form of a series. All we can say is that the people involved clearly have the potential to transform Ginger Snaps into a remarkable new serial.