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'Blood and Chocolate' Premiers Thursday on St. Thomas

Jan. 23, 2007 – If the new year is starting out a little too peacefully for you, rush right out to Market Square East and buy a ticket for "Blood and Chocolate." Warning: it won't soothe your sweet tooth.
However, if conflicted teenage werewolves are your cup of tea, it's well worth the price of admission. However, there's a softer side. The advance press describes it as a "Romeo and Juliet tale involving werewolves."
St. Thomas is on the cutting edge with this one; no reviews are published as yet, because it's not opening in the states until Jan. 26.
Now, it appears the movie could be a little confusing for those of us not well versed in werewolf lore. Here's how it goes: 10 years ago in the remote Colorado mountains, a young Vivian Gandillon (Agnes Bruckner) watches her family murdered by a pack of angry men for the secret they carried in their blood. Vivian survives by running into the woods and changing into something the hunters couldn't find – a wolf.
Somehow, years later, she winds up in Bucharest, wouldn't you know, working in a chocolate shop by day and trawling the city's underground clubs at night trying to escape her cousin, Rafe (Bryan Dick), and his gang of delinquents.
Meantime, she runs into Aiden Galvin (Hugh Dancy), an artist researching Bucharest's ancient art and relics for his next graphic novel, which is based on the mythology of the loup garoux — shapeshifters, whose power to change effortlessly into the forms of both human and wolf was once considered holy.
Vivian is among the last of her kind, leading a tenuous existence under the protection and control of Gabriel (Olivier Martinez), the powerful and enigmatic leader of one of the last packs of loup garoux on earth.
Little does Aiden know, he has already met one, and she's not mythological. She's here and she's hot. So it is with star-crossed lovers – Vivian has to ponder if she should she confess about her wolfishness, which to a degree, she relishes. But, that's not all; who she falls in love with is already predetermined. To keep their kind from being hunted to extinction, Gabriel holds them to strict laws. One is that he must take a new bride every seven years, and Vivian has been prophesied to be his next.
What a mess!
Here's what Bruckner says attracted her to the role of Vivian, from an interview on www.Movieweb.com: "First of all her strength. I think she's a really emotionally strong character … She does have different lives. Where she's a wolf on one side and being a human on the other, still loving the wolf side of her and also wanting to be a human. Wanting to feel love and be free and not be involved with this pack but also loving it. I think this whole struggle that she goes through is what attracted me most to her."
Good enough.
Filmed in Romania and other locales throughout Europe, the movie was directed by Katja von Garnier, from a novel of the same name by Annette Curtis Klause.?It is rated PG-13 for violence, terror, some sexuality, and, for good measure, substance abuse.
It opens Thursday at Market Square East.
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