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Tagline : "His hideous howl, a dirge of death!"

The Wolf ManOne of Universal studios later iconic movie monsters, coming out some 10 years after "Dracula" and "Frankenstein". "The Wolfman" stars Lon Chaney Jr as Larry Talbot, the son of a wealthy estate owner, who's returned to the family home following the death of his older brother.

Whilst heading home from a carnival on the outskirts of town, Larry and his friends are attacked by a wolf like creature, which bites Larry, before clubing it to death with his silver headed cane. However, insyead of a dead wolf, the authorities find the body of one of the Gypsy fortune tellers from the carnival (played by Bela Lugosi, so you know there's going to be trouble).

But when another local is killed by a wild animal, the authorities are convinced they have a wolf of some sort on the loose, but is it actually a werewolf, and is Larry the culprit? Of course the answer to both questions is yes, as we're treated to a rather amusing transformation, considered quite groundbreaking for its day, of Larry slowing sprouting hair and growing fangs.

Sadly, the film doesn't really do much else after this. It's a full 45mins before Lon Chaney's character goes through his transformation and as the film is only just over an hour long, doesn't really have time to do much else before they have to bring the story to a close. He only really kills one person and attacks one other, with the bulk of the film setting up it's central premise.

That's not to say this is a "bad" film as such, its just a bit of a slow one. The Werewolf concept had actually been attempted by Universal once before, but didn't really catch on. So I can only imagine the longevity of Lon Chaney's Wolfman charcter is probably due to them deciding to use him is several crossover movies that followed ("Frankenstein Vs The Wolf Man", "Abbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein" etc).

To summarise, this one is worth a watch if you like old B&W horror movies, but pails in comparison to "Dracula" and "Frankenstein".

Overall Marks : 4/10.

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