Saturday, 24 September 2011

Hairy Noon & Nighty Night Night

For some reason, 'Classic British Horror' tended to steer away from films about werewolves, I don't know why, perhaps the make up is too expensive. It's a shame, as the few examples I can think of are pretty good, particularly 'Curse Of The Werewolf' (1961), which is absolutely terrific.

Set in 19th century Spain, a lengthy prologue shows us exactly how a werewolf is made: a crazy feral tramp rapes a buxom deaf mute and makes her pregnant. Sorry, if that's unnecessarily scientific for you. The result of this unholy union is Leon, a sweet little boy who kills sheep at full moon and grows into a young Oliver Reed. Reed is perfect in the role - likeable, but full of brooding intensity. When he flips, and flip he flipping well does, he makes one angry, bloody, white werewolf.

Excellent stuff, from Terence Fisher's fluid direction to the innovative look of the monster, it's a shame Hammer didn't follow this up with a series of sequels. They made four Mummy films, for instance, and everyone knows a werewolf is better than a mummy. You couldn't make it up.

1 comment:

  1. A lovely film.
    My only gripe with hammer is that they didn't follow this up with more (as you've already said).
    I just wanted to say it again because it really pisses me off.
    Imagining the lurid Werewolf tales they could have made in the early 70's is a common day-dream of mine.