An American Werewolf in London [1981] Movie Review Recommendation

An American Werewolf in London [1981]

An American Werewolf in London is another old school classic, and this time the storyamerican_werewolf_in_london is about werewolves. As a motive, they have been present in movies for more than a hundred years, with the first movie featuring werewolves being released in 1913. Of course, it was a silent film. If I said to you two words: Werewolf and Eighties, I think your first reaction would be Teen Wolf with Michael J. Fox. However, the genre livened up several years earlier with the release of The Howling, Wolfen and perhaps the best one of them all, An American Werewolf in London. To fully understand just how influential AWL was, consider the fact that Rick Baker, special effect (makeup and effects) guy, was the first man to receive an Oscar in the new category best makeup created to reflect the infamous transformation scene.

Two American students are on a walking tour of beautiful English countryside, not aware that there’s something lurking in the dark. Something dangerous. First of, the main character David Kessler is so lovable and charismatic that he could be very funny when situation required him to be. But also very serious and engaging, especially later on in the movie. Landis wanted to show violence as it really is, drawing a strong contrast between likable characters, humor and brutal, visceral violence. The effects are by today’s standards a bit cheesy but there’s something charming about them. Something that these computerized creatures will never have. A beautiful story, a bit of humor and a bit of horror is the perfect combination, and that worked very well for this movie. Enjoy.

Director: John Landis

Cast: David Naughton, Jenny Agutter, Griffin Dunne, Frank Oz, John Woodvine, Lila Kaye

Fun Facts: John Landis came up with a film following an incident while shooting Kelly’s Heroes (1970) in the countryside of Yugoslavia. While driving along a country road with a colleague, Landis encountered a gypsy funeral. The body was being buried in a massively deep grave, feet first, while wrapped in garlic, so as he would not rise from the dead.


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