When asked if I wanted to see this film I always answered with an excitable “YES!!!” because the trailers were very intriguing. My first thoughts were “Oh they are using people who can act incredibly well instead of the people everyone drools over”. The film did NOT disappoint me.
Warning, this review will contain spoilers so if you are very excited to see the film, but do not want the full plot ruined then please close this window now.
I am presuming that if you are still reading you have either seen the film or do not care about spoilers. Let’s begin with the plot. So we begin the film with Ig (Daniel Radcliffe) and Merrin (Juno Temple) lying on a blanket in the middle of a forest telling each other how much they love one another – then we see a drunk Ig in his house with people shouting outside about how he murdered Merrin. Already I felt this wonderful sense of bewilderment about what had happened, which is exactly what the film makers and writers would have wanted. Fast forward slightly and Ig has woken up next to a naked woman (who he has known since childhood) feeling discomfort in his head. He looks in the mirrors and, as the title suggests, he has grown horns. He goes back through the the woman and asks if she can see anything different only to find her in a strange state – she has taken the sin of glutton upon her which she would never have done before – he leaves to visit the doctor.
There are a couple encounters at the doctors reception area where people are telling Ig all the bad things they want to do with out even realising it – even a little girl tells him about wanting to burn her mother. Things are no different when he is in the doctors office when the doctor offers to do drugs with him – he of course says no because he is there to get the horns off. So the doctor begins sawing the horns off and we see a flashback of Ig’s time with Merrin and how happy in love they were which is lovely – we also see how they met as kids and it is revealed that Ig’s friend Lee also liked Merrin. Ig wakes up to find the doctor and the nurse having sex instead of sawing his horns off – he leaves. I won’t go in to too much detail about the rest of those encounters.
Everyone thinks Ig killer Merrin because on the night she died he was going to propose to her, but instead she broke up with him and he got very angry in the diner they were in. However Ig’s brother reveals that he was in love with Merrin too and left the diner on the same night in which Merrin died, but did not kill her. At this stage I was so invested in the storyline that I was coming up with my own theories as to who killed Merrin. I won’t tell you how or why, but remember the friend Lee I mentioned earlier? Well it turns out he killed Merrin. We find this out after the point where Ig figures out he is a demonic figure and gains friendship with snakes. So their is a confrontation between Lee and Ig where Lee attempts to kill Ig and thinks he has managed until he sees Ig again. Ig manages to get rid of the demonic side by putting on Merrins cross – which is actually how they became friends in the first place, she shined it in the sun to get his attention – so he has no horns now. When met with Lee again he takes the cross off to destroy him.
What happens next was a really heart warming moment. Basically Ig turns full demon, I mean he is basically fire and rock at this stage, and tried to fight Lee, but Lee manages to get Ig in the stomach with a pitch fork. Ig does manage to kill Lee, but still end up dying anyway. The next scene shows the beginning again where Ig and Merrin are sitting on the blanket expressing their love for each other, however now it makes more sense and Ig calls it “paradise”.
I have missed quite a lot of the plot out because if you haven’t seen the film yet I didn’t want to spoil EVERYTHING for you.
The acting in this film is very good, Juno Temple, Daniel Radcliffe and Joe Anderson really stood out to me as far as ability goes. I would go as far as saying it is Joe Anderson’s best performance, although I haven’t seen everything he has been in. Daniel Radcliffe was very good – I am really enjoying the fact that he is doing a wide variety of genres right now and doing a darn good job in every single one, his performance in Kill your darlings is my personal favourite, but closely followed by his performance in Horns. Juno Temple is always good, but I have never seen her like this, she was so far past the line of being good that she was amazing. If you’re not in to the themes of the film watch it for the acting alone.
Originality is a huge thing for me and I guess the exact reason I adore Horns as much as do. I have seen films similar to this before, but never done in this way the writers, directors and producers should be commended for making my favourite Halloween watch in five years – and I love Zombieland… – If you are looking for something with a different style or just something a little bit unusual then this film is right up your street. It hasn’t been “hollywoodised” as I call it meaning the film doesn’t coast solely on the fact Daniel Radcliffe is the star – it is actually a decent film. Even the way it is shot and edited made me happy. There was interesting use of colour correction to add intensity to the film and the shots were very inventive. Normally I am not a fan of religious elements in films such as this, however this film would not have worked with out it and I really enjoyed the religious parts of the film – this is something the writer should be very proud of because it is such an original idea.
All in all I absolutely adored this film and will be seeing it again! Have you seen it? If so what did you think? 🙂