Daniel Radcliffe is Harry Potter, we all know this. I always made the "Oh look, there's Harry Potter" joke about Radcliffe in any movie he was in. There's a point when you just have to move on from stuff like that. Okay, maybe not move completely on, but this is one of the first Daniel Radcliffe movies that I never thought of him as that magical wizard. It's a horror film that relies on a thriller and murder mystery vibe, all intertwined with a supernatural fantasy element. If that's a lot to digest, it's because it is, but 'Horns' actually blends it all together quite well.
'Horns' follows the story Ignatius "IG" Parish (Daniel Radcliffe), who awakens one morning after a drunken night out to find horns sprouting out of his head. The horns begin to bring out peoples deepest and darkest desires. While all this is going on, the town he lives in, is in an uproar because IG's girlfriend, Merrin (Juno Temple), had been raped and murdered and he is the prime suspect. IG's best friend Lee (Max Minghella) is the only person who believes him and is helping his court case. His family, including is brother Terry (Joe Anderson), is wary of everything and a childhood friend of his, Eric (Michael Adamthwaite), now the sheriff, is against him as well. IG must use the evil that has been bestowed upon him, to find out who really killed Merrin and clear his name once and for all.
Movies based of books are either good or bad. There's no middle ground. Even though I've never read the novel that 'Horns' is based on, it's also called 'Horns', this is one of the better book to film movies I've seen lately. It's not really fair to compare this to what David Fincher did with 'Gone Girl' but 'Horns' is pretty damn solid in it's own right. We'll start with the story and while formulaic, is still very original overall. A man, suspected of murdering his longtime girlfriend in a fairly small town, wakes up with horns that are able to bring out the thoughts and desires of people. It's a highly original concept that I was kinda wary of after only watching the trailer. You'd think this would give a ton away of the actual mystery, but it's all done well and really does build until the finale in a great way. This isn't a typical horror film either. While there's some jump scares and "scary" images, this really relies on spiritual and supernatural scares. Thoughts that will linger with you and trippy, albeit sometimes funny, moments. The actual thriller and mystery side of this is alright as well. I liked the process of actually solving the murder-mystery. This is really helped along by the character development. You get to really learn about IG, Merrin, and the rest of the main cast and get into their heads. It's not just movie characters, you really feel like you know these people by the time you finish this up. Further than that you could call this a breakaway film for Daniel Radcliffe. While this isn't the greatest film of the year, it does showcase Daniel Radcliffe will. It may also be my favorite movie starring him since the 'Harry Potter' series. You get comedy, emotion and well acted scenes all throughout this film. So it's kinda hard to find a bad moment he has in this. Juno Temple is also a nice standout, I can't say I've seen any of her other films, but she is a treat in 'Horns' and really ties the whole film together. The supporting cast also includes the likes of Heather Graham, David Morse and James Remar, who provide nice scenes that tie the film together. This music is fantastic throughout, the small-town setting is also eerie as well. The movie kinda drags at times and is also pretty long, clocking in at just under two hours. That shouldn't stop you from checking this film out in the slightest.
'Horns' is a very pleasant surprise for me. This is mostly because I wasn't expecting to really be into this and like it this much. It's one of the best horror films of the year and one of my favorites overall as well. You get into the story pretty quickly, you start to try and figure out this whodunit and you hope to God that one day Daniel Radcliffe doesn't drag your deepest darkest thoughts out. The scares a really limited until you start thinking about it afterward, at least that's what happened with me. Not just the supernatural side, but also the real life side, the loss of someone close to you. I highly recommend you check 'Horns' out for yourself.