The Werewolf

wolfman, werewolf, werewolves

They’re not sexy, or refined, or romantic…they’re mean, mad and murderous. Being a hot babe ain’t gonna get you too far with the werewolf, the baddest monster of them all.

The Wolf Man hasn’t been as immortalized in film as the vampire, at least not until recently, most likely due to the difficulty in creating transformation special effects. While CGI has made that easier, not all special effects are created equal, and some of the more traditional effects in older movies can be scarier than the CGI of today.

From Lon Chaney Jr., to Benecio Del Toro, the wolf man — and woman — have evolved and diversified over the years.

The Wolf Man (1941)

  Lon Chaney, Jr. rocked it really old school. No protruding noses or claws popping out of his fingers effects, just a good old-fashioned time lapse. And a creepy moody atmosphere. It’s hard to top the master of transformation. And remember:

 “Even a man who is pure in heart and says his prayers by night may become a wolf when the wolfbane blooms and the autumn moon is bright.”

The classic that set the standard for this new cinematic monster, and finally came full circle with Benecio Del Toro’s take on the legend.

 

Howling (1981)

The original of this so-called series (I hate to lump the others with this one) has some of the creepiest moments in werewolf movies PERIOD. Not only did they manage to make a creepy DAYTIME atmosphere, I’ll never look at a smiley face sticker the same way again.

This film mixed some dark humor with its fear factor, and made Dee Wallace a horror icon.

The female werewolf has a distinctly Angelina vibe to her, although some of the special effects at the end of the “love” scene leave much to be desired.

One of the best werewolf movies to this day. It’s only a matter of time before some douchebag decides to remake it.

 Wolfen (1981)

This is a little sleeper of a film with a subtle creepiness. Short on special effects, they use more point of view footage to get their point across, and do it well.  The also added a special effect to the werewolf point of view that inspired such later films as “Predator.”

Because you never really see the wolf, the film sparked debate over whether it really was a traditional werewolf film. See what you think for yourself.

I know it’s a radical concept to have a horror film, and a werewolf film at that, without a lot of gore and violence, but it works, trust me.

This adaptation of Whitley Strieber’s 1978 novel The Wolfen stars Albert Finney, Diane Venora, Gregory Hines and Edward James Olmos. Also look for an uncredited cameo by Tom Waits as the drunken bartender. Boy, that was a strecth.

Well acted and worth a look.

An American Werewolf in London (1981)

Pretty much everyone knows this one. And with good reason.The first “funny” werewolf movie, it also boasts some very disturbing nightmare scenes and the “creepy eyes opening” nightmare scared the bejesus out of me.
Dunne is hilarious, and of course, I’m partial to the love interest, or at least her naming – Nurse Price. This film has the classic old school werewolf transformation scene. And of course, what better soundtrack for the moment than “Bad Moon Rising?”
Rather cheeky of director John Landis.

The Company of Wolves (1985)

 Ooohhh how I love this little underrated movie, and early directorial effort by Neil Jordan. True to the dark fairytale roots of the wolf legends, it’s moody, it’s atmospheric, and I think that unknown actor playing the wolf at the end not only puts in a quirky, but downright SEXY performance.
I would have kissed him. And run off with him. But hey, that’s me…I always seem to root for the bad men.

Silver Bullet (1985)

This classic Stephen King film features Gary Busey and Corey Haim in much better times.

Based on a short story by Stephen King, this is a pretty good little movie, especially for the time period. If you’ve ever sort of looked at your local preacher a little funny and wondered if he really is as saintly as he appears to be, you should really like this one.
Plus the 80s overload nostalgia factor.

Full Eclipse (1993)

Now here’s an obscure one. Did you ever picture Mario Van Peebles as a werewolf? Neither did I!
I know someone will crucify me for saying this, but I like this movie. Some vigilante cops like to get hopped up with injections that make them go werewolf before taking out bad men, but their ringleader isn’t exactly divulging all the facts…like what will happen when the eclipse occurs.
This totally makes me want to shoot some serious werewolf power. What a rush!

 

Wolf (1994)

While there are many good moments in “Wolf,” I’m partial to JackNicholson marking his territory as any dog would do. If you haven’t seenit, I’m not about to spoil it for you.Hey…it’s Jack. You know it has to be good.

Dog Soldiers (2002)

This little film has picked up quite a cult following, but evenknowing that, I was a bit surprised they have it available on blu-ray.Definitely a cut above most werewolf movies, and not a terribly big budget film.

Ginger Snaps (2002)

Werewolves meet puberty and suburban angst.
There’s so much to love about this movie. I never thought I would watch a film where the opening credits are one of my favorite parts, but this one is brilliant, with images the sisters have done of their own staged deaths. Brilliant.Both actresses bring a dark humor to their morbid gothness in surburban hell, but Mimi Rogers as their ditzy mother is fantastic as well. And this is the first time I’ve seen lycanthropy used as a metaphor for puberty.Trust me, it works. In SPADES.

 

Underworld Series (2003)

Vampires beating up on werewolves? Oh PUH-lease…werewolves SO trump vampires. EVERYONE knows this.

But for this kind of elegant, gothy atmosphere, I’ll go along for the ride. This series is pure eye candy, and the CGI werewolves are well done, unlike another series which I shan’t name…

*COUGH* Twilight *COUGH*

I have to say when I saw the first installment of this series in the theater, seeing and hearing those wolves on the big screen freaked me out a little. And I don’t freak out easy, hardcore horror chick I am.

Well done special effects team, well done.

The Wolf Man (2010)

I love scary movies. I love lush gothic sets and costuming. I love werewolves. And oh, how I love Benecio Del Toro.

Just thinking about all of the above makes me want to get up and do the Snoopy happy dance. In fact, I think I will…

Okay, where were we? STUNNING eye candy, with those gorgeous sets and beautiful wardrobe design. And not only Benecio, but Sir Anthony Hopkins and the always fabulous Hugo Weaving…even hardcore old school gal I am, I have to give this kudos over the original. Exceptional special effects job with the CGI, for the fantastic transformation scene with the doctor and his audience, and with the way he moves, seamlessly going from running upright to all fours.

To the naysayers and purists who criticized it, I say look at it as its own creation, not as a “remake” of the original. And run with it.

Trick ‘R Treat (2010)

I have declared my love for this movie from here to kingdom come.

The werewolf scenes are only a small part of the movie, but warrant a mention here. They employ a slightly different take on how they transform here, which I won’t elaborate on here in case you haven’t seen it. But I will say if you are male, you will enjoy the ladies transforming as well.

Hey, it ain’t a horror film proper without a little T&A,I suppose. Extra points for setting aforementioned transformation to “Sweet Dreams,” the Marilyn Manson version.

Awesome.

Red Riding Hood (2011)

For a dark fairy tale version of the red riding hood story, I prefer “The Company of Wolves”but this is a nice little horror film. Beautiful sets and costuming, better than average acting and atmosphere.

The Full List

  • Werewolf, The (1913)
  • White Wolf, The (1914)
  • Loup Garou, Le (1923)
  • Wolf Blood (1925)
  • Loup Garou, Le (1932)
  • Werewolf of London, The (1935)
  • Wolf Man, The (1941)
  • Mad Monster, The (1942)
  • Undying Monster, The (1942)
  • Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943)
  • Loup des Malveneur, Le (1943)
  • Return of the Vampire, The (1944)
  • Idle Roomers (1944)
  • Cry of the Werewolf (1944)
  • House of Frankenstein (1944)
  • House of Dracula (1945)
  • She-Wolf of London (1946)
  • Bud Abbott and Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948)
  • Werewolf, The (1956)
  • I Was A Teenage Werewolf (1957)
  • Daughter of Dr. Jekyll (1957)
  • Professor, The (1958)
  • How to Make a Monster (1958)
  • Curse of the Werewolf, The (1961)
  • House On Bare Mountain (1962)
  • Lycanthropus (1962)
  • Devil Wolf Of Shadow Mountain (1964)
  • Face Of The Screaming Werewolf (1964)
  • Dr Terror’s House of Horrors (1965)
  • Orgy of the Dead (1965)
  • Dr Terror’s Gallery of Horrors (1966)
  • Blood of Dracula’s Castle (1969)
  • Dracula vs. Frankenstein (1970)
  • Cry of the Banshee (1970)
  • Beast of the Yellow Night (1971)
  • Shadow of the Werewolf (1971)
  • Werewolves on Wheels (1971)
  • Rats Are Coming! The Werewolves are Here!, The (1972)
  • The Fury of the Wolfman (1972)
  • Dr Jekyll and the Werewolf (1972)
  • Moon of the Wolf (1972)
  • Werewolf of Washington, The (1973)
  • Boy Who Cried Werewolf, The (1973)
  • Beast Must Die, The (1974)
  • Blood (1974)
  • Deathhead Virgin, The (1974)
  • Scream of the Wolf (1974)
  • Legend of the Werewolf (1975)
  • Werewolf of Woodstock (1975)
  • Death Moon (1978)
  • Wolfman (1979)
  • Monster Club, The (1980)
  • Full Moon High (1981)
  • Howling, The (1981)
  • An American Werewolf In London (1981)
  • Beast Within, The (1982)
  • Thriller (1983)
  • Hard Rock Zombies (1984)
  • Kaos (1984)
  • Tales of the Third Dimension (1984)
  • Company of Wolves, The (1984)
  • Ladyhawke (1985)
  • Teen Wolf (1985)
  • Howling II, The: Stirba – Werewolf Bitch (1985)
  • Silver Bullet (1985)
  • Midnight Hour, The (1985)
  • Transylvania 6-5000 (1985)
  • Haunted Honeymoon (1986)
  • Howl of the Devil (1987)
  • Deadtime Stories (1987)
  • Monster Squad, The (1987)
  • Howling III, The : The Marsupials (1987)
  • Teen Wolf Too (1987)
  • Hard Rock Nightmare (1988)
  • Howling IV, The : The Original Nightmare (1988)
  • Scooby-Doo and the Reluctant Werewolf (1988)
  • Waxwork (1988)
  • Lone Wolf (1988)
  • Howling V, The : The Rebirth (1989)
  • My Mom’s A Werewolf (1989)
  • Night Shadow (1989)
  • Fright Night Part II (1989)
  • Red Riding Hood (1989)
  • Howling VI, The : The Freaks (1990)
  • Meridian (1990)
  • Mom (1990)
  • Runestone, The (1990)
  • Curse of Claudia, The (1991)
  • Mad at the Moon (1992)
  • Nightmare Before Christmas, The (1993)
  • Full Eclipse (1993)
  • Conrad Brooks vs. the Werewolf (1994)
  • Howling, The : New Moon Rising (1994)
  • Twisted Tales (1994)
  • Wolf (1994)
  • Monster Mash : The Movie (1995)
  • Project : Metalbeast (1995)
  • Also Called: Project : Metalbeast — DNA Overlord
  • Shriek of the Lycanthrope (1995)
  • Pistolero (1995)
  • Blood Slaves of the Vampire Werewolf (1996)
  • Frankenstein and Me (1996)
  • Lycantropus : The Moonlight Murders (1996)
  • Werewolf (1996)
  • Wilderness (1996)
  • Bad Moon (1996)
  • Creeps, The (1997)
  • Tale Of The Urban Werewolf (1997)
  • An American Werewolf In Paris (1997)
  • Blue Moon (1998)
  • Cold Hearts (1999)
  • Curse, The (1999)
  • Eyes of the Werewolf (1999)
  • Rage of the Werewolf (1999)
  • Lycanthrope (1999)
  • Ginger Snaps (2000)
  • Monster Mash (2000)
  • Blood of the Werewolf (2001)
  • Miss Werewolf (2001)
  • Wolf Girl (2001)
  • Dog Soldiers (2002)
  • Wolves of Wall Street (2002)
  • Bites : The Werewolf Chronicles (2003)
  • Tomb of the Werewolf (2003)
  • Chimera (2003)
  • DarkWolf (2003)
  • Underworld (2003)
  • Tenement, The (2003)
  • Exhumed (2003)
  • Werewolf Tales (2003)
  • Werewolf Solution, The (2004)
  • Ginger Snaps : Unleashed (2004)
  • Van Helsing (2004)
  • Ginger Snaps Back : The Beginning (2004)
  • Skin Walker (2004)
  • Evil Deeds (2004)
  • Lunar Pack, The (2004)
  • Curse of the Wolf (2004)
  • Worst Horror Movie Ever Made, The (2005)
  • Cursed (2005)
  • Wolfsbayne (2005)
  • Monsters of the Purple Twilight (2005)
  • Brothers Grimm, The (2005)
  • Wild Country (2005)
  • Beast of Bray Road, The (2005)
  • Mexican Werewolf in Texas (2005)
  • Full Moon Massacre (2006)
  • Horrors of War (2006)
  • Lycanthrope (2006)
  • Werewolf in a Women’s Prison (2006)
  • Wolfika (2006)
  • Underworld : Evolution (2006)
  • Lycan Colony (2006)
  • In the Red (2006)
  • Feeding, The (2006)
  • Bloodz vs Wolvez (2006)
  • Totally Awesome (2006)
  • Blood and Chocolate (2007)
  • Big Bad Wolf (2007)
  • Skinwalkers (2007)
  • Hybrid (2007)
  • Necroville (2007)
  • Cold-Blooded (2007)
  • Nature of the Beast (2007)
  • Lycanthropy (2007)
  • Werewolf : The Devil’s Hound (2007)
  • Never Cry Werewolf (2008)
  • Trick ‘r Treat (2008)
  • Animals (2008)
  • War Wolves (2008)
  • Underworld: Rise of the Lycans (2009)
  • Band from Hell, The (2009)
  • Timo Rose’s Beast (2009)
  • Hammer of the Gods (2009)
  • House of the Wolf Man (2009)
  • Wolvesbayne (2009)
  • Dark Moon Rising (2009)
  • Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant (2009)
  • Wolfman, The (2010)
  • Vampires Suck (2010)
  • Night Wolf (2010)
  • Half Moon (2010)
  • Boy Who Cried Werewolf, The (2010)
  • Red: Werewolf Hunter (2010)
  • Dylan Dog: Dead of Night (2010)
  • Red Riding Hood (2011)
  • Monster Brawl (2011)
  • Game of Werewolves (2011)
  • Howling, The: Reborn (2011)
  • Underworld: Awakening (2012)
  • Cabin in the Woods, The (2012)
  • Jack and Diane (2012)
  • Strippers vs Werewolves (2012)
  • Dark Shadows (2012)
  • Hotel Transylvania (2012)
  • Werewolf: The Beast Among Us (2012)
  • Love Bite (2012)
  • Mortal Instruments, The: City of Bones (2013)

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