Put on some Warren Zevon (Little old lady got mutilated late last night. AH-HOOOO! Werewolves of London!) and get your wolfsbane handy, because Eric and Mike are going to talk all things lycanthropic.
Werewolves are probably the least respected of the favorite horror monsters. They are the forgotten stepchild. That said, every generation has a werewolf worthy of discussion. The shapeshifter has been a thing of nightmares in all cultures pretty much forever, dating back to the ancient Aztecs, Greeks, and are heavily populated in English, German, and Russian Folklore. It’s because people always expected that somebody just might be an animal in disguise. So they get the blame for a lot of bad shit.
You know the tropes. Full moon. Silver bullets. Gypsy curses. Crunchy body horror transformations. We’ve been there many times. So, how do you find a werewolf movie that finds a fresh take on a familiar tale?
First off, we’re going to recognize the great ones. The flag bearers for werewolves everywhere. We’d like to assume that you’ve seen these movies, but because our assumptions tend to underestimate how much our fans have seen. So, just to be sure, you HAVE to see these four films:
- An American Werewolf in London (1981) by many accounts (including ours) one of the best horror movies of all time.
The JohnLandis production delivers the best transformation of all time, and it’s not even really close, and the film boasts great heart, humor, and scares.
- The Hunger (1981) What a year for werewolf movies! The hunger is the flip side of the coin to AAWIL, as it does not make you feel much for the werewolves (until the very end). These are capital M Monsters. Evil lycanthropes that revel in their wicked power. Full of great easter eggs and 80’s winks, and it established Joe Dante as a horror director of great promise.
- The Wolf M
an (1941). Not the first of the genre, as that distinction goes to The Werewolf of London (1935). However, there can be no doubt that Lon Chaney’s furry-faced wolfman is one of Universal’s all-time greats. The painstaking transformation of man to wolf-man was a special-effects wonder at the time. The art direction of the moody moors and the raw charm of Lon Chaney makes this a must see.
- Dog Soldiers (2002). Action packed! And, featuring the best-looking werewolves ever put to screen. This movie plays out like Aliens, or Southern Comfort meets werewolves. This British film amps up the adrenaline and brings on the gore. Bullets fly and heads get ripped off. Fun for everybody!
And yes, there are plenty of other good ones, and we concentrated on some of the more obscure titles that chronicle these shape-shifters. All of these films are currently available for streaming, so listen in to Mike and Eric jabbering away, and then check them out!
I saw Lon Chaney walking with the Queen.
Doin’ the werewolves of London.
Werewolves of London!