SHE-WOLF OF LONDON (1946)
Article #264 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 12-5-2001
Posting date: 4-20-2002
A woman believes she is suffering from the Curse of the Allenbys, which would cause her to go the park at night and perform werewolf-like murders on people.
MAJOR SPOILERS IN COMMENTARY
This is one of those movies where someone believes they are committing a series of horrible murders. She doesn’t remember them, but she sees evidence, such as mud appearing on her shoes overnight. She breaks off her impending marriage for fear of the curse. In order to help her sleep, her aunt (who isn’t really her aunt, as we find out in the first ten minutes) gives her a glass of milk every night and urges her to drink it all. This isn’t a movie, this is a math problem; just put two and two together and see what comes out.
So there’s no real surprises in this movie. It was shot quickly, but with a certain amount of professionalism. it’s incredibly talky, and quite repetitive.
Nonetheless, there is something almost archetypal about this movie. In some ways, it’s the prime example of the “I just think I’m a monster, but I’m really not” plot that pops up occasionally in horror movies; in fact, from this point onward, I’ll refer to them as “She-Wolf of London” movies. Usually, there’s no monster at all in these movies, but they can surprise you on occasion. Nonetheless, I always find these movies somewhat disappointing and more than a little annoying; in fact, as a general rule, whenever you have a scene where person one is urged by person two to “finish their drink before they go to bed” and the movie then dwells on person one finishing their drink, you can rest assured that person two is the real villain.
Someone asked me to compare it to CRY OF THE WEREWOLF when that was the Movie of the Day, and I couldn’t at that time because I hadn’t seen this one in years. Having seen them both recently, I’d say they’re about equal quality-wise; SHE-WOLF OF LONDON certainly looks more professional, but at least CRY OF THE WEREWOLF has a real monster.