One tends to find it a bit constricting to write about plot when tackling a book adaptation. I think Horns, the film, can be described to those who are not familiar with the book as a somewhat gruesomely touching and, at times, funny, fairy tale of good and evil; a love story that transcends death and a tale of sorry and revenge that plants its feet in religion without abusing it.
Directed by Alexandre Aja, based on Joe Hill‘s novel of the same name. Star of this fantasy thriller production is the ever too hairy Daniel Radcliffe, a young man accused of murdering of his girlfriend, a very beautifully rising star Juno Temple. Harassed by reporters, friends, townspeople and not even believed by his own family he develops a condition: since everyone thinks he’s a monster he one morning wakes up as one, a man with devilish horns and the disconcerting power of making people do what he wants and reveal their most personal secrets. Now that no one can hide the truth from him he takes upon himself the task to find the real killer.
This about sums up the plot of a very entertaining movie, filled with a brilliants performance by Radcliffe who is deadly determined to shake off his Harry Potter naïve persona putting all he can in the role of the vengeance-seeking, demon-in-love, king of the hell that he perceives is his small town.
The fine-print: good is relative and sometimes one has to decide “to live with the sin that is more bearable”, what he says to the father of the murdered girl, knowing that it shall be his task to take the truth to light and avenge the love of his life, thus finding his own peace and saving the father from more sorrow.
Through moderated and quite funny mayhem a sweet and touching parable emerges and the happy ending is not what one would usually expect.
Horns premiered at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival, and hit theaters on October 31 but has been available digitally on iTunes since Oct. 6th.