Following much of the recipe that helped turn “The Inbetweeners Movie” into a massive U.K. smash last year, but lacking all the brand value and most of the wit, “Love Bite” is a lame attempt at a Brit teen sex comedy, with added werewolf genre elements. Even Ed Speleers’ current “Downton Abbey” cachet did little to help the pic in its opening weekend, as it took only £73,000 ($116,000) from 180 screens. International prospects look decidedly iffy; ancillary reps the film’s best chance to claw back middling production coin.
In the seaside town of Rainmouth, four horny male teenagers consider careers in garbage collection, while sensitive protag Jamie (Speleers) dreads a lifetime looking after his fun-seeking mom (Kierston Wareing, underused) and the family B&B. After sexy travel blogger Juliana (Jessica Szohr) arrives, local youths start falling victim to a werewolf pursued by Timothy Spall’s mysterious lycanthrope hunter. Story elements from horror comedies as varied as “Cherry Falls” and “Lesbian Vampire Killers” go into the blender, but the absence of laughs or scares makes for a risible cocktail. Direction by Andy De Emmony (“West Is West”) is serviceable.
An Entertainment Films release of a WestEnd Films and Creative Scotland presentation of an Ecosse Films production. (International sales: WestEnd Films, London.) Produced by Robert Bernstein, Douglas Rae, Paul Ritchie. Executive producers, Maya Amsellem, Eve Schoukroun, Sharon Harel, Mark Woolley. Co-producers, Matt Delargy, James Saynor, Genevieve Lemal. Directed by Andy De Emmony. Screenplay, Ron Blaney, Cris Cole.
Camera (color, widescreen, HD), Tat Radcliffe; editors, Matt Platts-Mills, Dan Farrell; music, Nick Green; music supervisor, Ian Neil; production designer, Mike Gunn; art directors, Moley Campbell, Rhian Nicholas; costume designer, Anna Robbins; sound (Dolby Digital), Alastair Mason; supervising sound editor, Srdjan Kurpjel; re-recording mixers, Gareth Llewellyn, Kurpjel, Samir Foco; visual effects supervisor, Jean-Louis Billard; visual effects, Digital Golem; stunt coordinator, Andy Bennett; line producer, Brian Kaczynski; assistant director, Jonathan Farmer; casting, Shaheen Baig. Reviewed at Empire Leicester Square, London, Nov. 9, 2012. Running time: 91 MIN.
Ed Speleers, Jessica Szohr, Luke Pasqualino, Timothy Spall, Daniel Kendrick, Robin Morrissey, Robert Pugh, Kierston Wareing, Adam Leese, Rosie Sansom.
(English, Swedish dialogue)
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