★★★1/2 out of ★★★★★
Directed by Dominic Brunt
Lycanthrope lovers take note: This humorous British romp is chock full of loving references to favorite fright fare of the past, as well as grue-filled action boasting plenty of solid-looking practical effects.
I’m a sucker for a fun werewolf film, and U.K. feature Wolf Manor (AKA Scream of the Wolf) is just that. Director Dominic Brunt’s feature pays plenty of homage to An American Werewolf in London while featuring a Howling-esque two-legged lycanthrope, and fear-fare fans should have a good time finding nods to other long-time favorites including the original Fright Night.
A film crew is working overtime at the titular abode, wrapping up shooting a throwback vampire film called Crimson Manor, which stars hammy actor Oliver Lawrence (James Fleet), who, between clandestine drinks of alcohol, loves to regale whoever will listen about his higher profile Hammer Studios-like roles of the past. The crew should have left by the time they were told to, because the full moon is out and a very vicious bipedal beast is about.
Brunt isn’t shy about showing the werewolf, which makes for a fun time as the creature design looks good and viewers are treated to plenty of lycanthropic screen time. The practical gore effects are plentiful and impressive, as well.
The humor is hit and miss, but the proceedings are always amusing, suspenseful, or both, making Wolf Manor a rollicking good time. Strongly recommended for fans of werewolf fare and horror comedy. Stick around after the credits for a waggish bit featuring Rula Lenska.
Review by Joseph Perry
Lightbulb Film Distribution will release Wolf Manor to own or rent on DVD and digital download from 9th January, 2023 in the U.K. and Ireland.