An American Werewolf in London for Day 22

An American Werewolf in London is a classic in the werewolf movie catalog. The movie itself often references older classic werewolf movies.

Two American men go backpacking in Europe. They begin in northern England with plans to finish in Italy. They are quickly attacked by a werewolf. One of them survives and eventually becomes an American werewolf in London and terror ensues.

The makeup effects in this movie are exquisite. Not only had  nothing been seen like the werewolf transformation before, I’d argue very little like it has followed that didn’t borrow from digital effects. It was even the first film awarded an Oscar for Best Makeup.

This movie also manages to keep a wonderful balance in tone. It feels as if one is watching an updated classic Hammer horror movie with the humor often found in 80s movies. (Even though The Wolf Man was Universal.) I later found out it was directed by the same guy who did Animal House, and it shows in a good way.

The subway scene is a particular favorite of mine, and I absolutely adore the ending. I very much recommend this movie and it’s not terrifying in the way many who don’t like horror wouldn’t like.

This movie was also successful in giving me no motivation to visit northern England. I will happily settle for London. I will also happily stay in London.

Things I Learned:

  1. Don’t ask about the 5-pointed star on the wall.
  2. Definitely don’t ask why there are candles around it.
  3. If the locals tell you to stay on the road, stay on the road.
  4. Killing yourself is hard to do when you want to live.

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