Hello, fellow moviegoers!
The Wolf Man is directed by George Waggner, and it stars Lon Chaney Jr., Claude Rains, Evelyn Ankers, and Bela Lugosi. It tells the story of a wealthy man who returns home to visit his father at their estate, after being gone for 18 years. When he has a run-in with a werewolf, he begins to experience odd changes as he begins to wonder if he has become a werewolf too. Spoiler alert: He has.
The Wolf Man was actually a really effective horror film when seen through the lens of the time it was made. You can’t show this film to a horror movie fan of today and expect them to be terrified, it’s just not going to happen.
Lon Chaney Jr. was extremely convincing as Larry Talbot (The Wolf Man). He conveyed the fear his character was experiencing in a very convincing fashion. Even in scenes where he had no lines, you could still see the concern he had over his predicament. He didn’t want to hurt anybody, but he couldn’t control the Wolf Man. His human character couldn’t have been further from the Wolf Man, and Chaney did a fantastic job showing that. However, when it came time for him to become a wolf, he did, and he did it wonderfully.
This film, like the other Universal monster films, suffers from the absence of falling action. There is no time for the audience to calm down after the film’s exciting culmination. As soon as the climax has concluded, the film does so as well. It was extremely abrupt and it leaves the audience with a bit of a sour taste in their mouths.
For the time, the makeup in the film was remarkable. It was by no means equal to the effects of An American Werewolf in London, or the digital effects of today, but considering the film came out 75 years ago, they did a pretty amazing job. The Wolf Man looked like exactly that. He was a man, but he was a wolf at the same time. They didn’t just make him a big wolf, as many werewolf films do now, they mixed the two and created a legitimate Wolf Man.
What did you think of 1941’s The Wolf Man? How does it compare to other classic horror films? Let me know by commenting on this post! Also, if you enjoyed this review, share it on Facebook and Twitter. It really helps! Don’t forget, I post every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, so check back then for more movie reviews and miscellaneous movie thoughts!
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