REVIEW / FILM OPINION – The success of the series “The Witcher” on Netflix has resulted in the creation of several spin-off projects. The animated film “The Witcher: The Wolf’s Nightmare” is the first spin-off to be drawn.
While waiting for season 3 of The Witcher
Eager to have his Game Of Thrones to him, Netflix decides to adapt The Witcher, a series of heroic-fantasy novels written by Andrzej Sapkowski (the video game from which it is adapted, will also serve as a model for the show). Released on December 20, 2019, season 1 was thus a triumph for the platform. Worn by Henry Cavill, the series is now eagerly awaited for a season 2. To make fans wait, Netflix therefore broadcasts The Witcher: The Wolf’s Nightmare, “prequel spin-off” which looks back on events that took place several years before those of the parent series. The animated film therefore relates the young years of Vesemir, future mentor of Geralt.
The dubbing cast includes ex-Divergent Theo James (in the role of Vesemir), Lara Pulver, Graham McTavish and Mary McDonnell. Note that another derivative series is also in preparation: The Witcher: Blood Origin. This show of 6 episodes will, in fact, allow to discover the origins of the very first Witcher, with a plot which will take place 1200 years before the events of the first series.
From the start, we notice an animation quite similar to that which is done within the japanimation. This is not trivial, since Studio Mir (Korean studio) is in charge here. The latter has already shown his talents in the past with The Legend of Korra, Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge as well as Netflix animated productions like Voltron, the legendary defender, Dota: Dragon’s Blood and Kipo and the Age of Animonsters. The studio was then characterized by its hardcore and brutal scenes.
Fans of the genre will therefore be reassured. Gore is regularly present in The Witcher: The Wolf’s Nightmare. The film spares nothing, including the children mutilated by the filthy creatures of this universe. Sensitive souls, abstain, therefore.
Those who could blame The Witcher its lack of sordid creatures, will also get their money’s worth in this animated feature film. Indeed, The Witcher: The Wolf’s Nightmare has a huge bestiary of all kinds of monsters. These are superbly staged and are particularly frightening when they are in action. The clashes are fast paced, efficient and visually stunning. In addition, the film can count on a charismatic character in the person of Vesemir. Less cold and silent than his disciple Geralt, the Witcher displays a savory cynical humor.
A weaker plot
Nevertheless, if the origin story of the protagonist is interesting (punctuated by regular flashbacks on his childhood), the story of The Witcher: The Wolf’s Nightmare is not the most exciting there is. Indeed, the plot is far too messy, and the twists too predictable to linger. The production mainly focused on the dark universe of the Witcher world, abandoning the rest. The secondary characters don’t have as much presence as Vesemir, and we quickly forget them. The film is finally here to offer an appetizer ahead of season 2 of The Witcher which promises to be thrilling. It’s a choice.
The Witcher: The Wolf’s Nightmare is available on Netflix on 23 Aug 2021. Above the trailer. Find all our trailers here.