Episode 51. Mark of the Beast: American Werewolf in London (1981) and Brotherhood of the Wolf (2001)

Andrea and Alex deep dive into humanity’s literal fear of wolves, metaphorical fear of the beast within and the differences between British and French werewolves. Hint: it’s not just the accent.

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REQUIRED READING

An American Werewolf in London. Dir John Landis, 1981.

Brotherhood of the Wolf. Dir Christophe Gans, 2001.

EXTRA CREDIT

Legends of the Werewolves – A slightly cheesy History channel documentary with lots of great information about the history of lycanthropy.

Why I Love… An American Werewolf in London – Part of the BFI’s personal history essays, this one delves into the cross section of growing up in the Jewish faith and watching American Werewolf in London.

The Werewolf of Hull! One of the recent reports of wolf sightings in the Northern city.

Solving the Mystery of the 18th-Century Killer “Beast of Gévaudan” – A summary of the history that Brotherhood of the Wolf was based on.

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5 thoughts on “Episode 51. Mark of the Beast: American Werewolf in London (1981) and Brotherhood of the Wolf (2001)

  1. Lara Hazelton says:

    Enjoyed the episode on werewolves. Have you discussed the 1942 Cat People with Simone Simon? Similar themes but with a female were-feline. The sequel is not worth watching, and the 1982 re-make is in my opinion not as good (of course, very different).

  2. Richard says:

    Lara beat me to the punch. Cat People is seminal film tackling repressed sexuality with groundbreaking cinematography and direction. I disagree with the comment about the sequel though, it’s a very different film, but a change of pace that still works.

    • Lara Hazelton says:

      Hi Richard – Always nice to hear from another fan. By the sequel, I mean 1944’s Curse of the Cat People, which came in my DVD case with the 1942 Cat People. Is that what you are referring to as ‘a change of pace that still works’? I thought it was dreadful – I would be interested to know what you liked about it.

  3. David Bellwood says:

    by way fo a suggestion, how about Children of the Full Moon from the Hammer House of Horror series for consideration in Werewolves, PArt 2 (whenever that may happen, if it happens)?

    By way of explanation, being English,I felt the dialogue about the isolation of Londoners and the relative friendliness of Northerners was spot on! Where it’s important, I feel, is the loneliness. For AAWiL, the wolves int he zoo remind us that wolves are pack animals. More so, the villagers in Yorkshire are actually protecting their own folk and secrets by advising David to stick to the road. The werewolf has always been odd for being solitary (Blood & Chocolate, Twilight, & Hotel Transylvania excepted). London creates a dual loneliness for David of being the werewolf-murderer but also been the unquestioned stranger. He can’t get interaction, and when he tries to engage with the policeman people are told to move away and stop communicating. I’m by no means trying to say that it’s a film about isolation, but I think loneliness is an important part of the werewolf myth, much more so than with vampires…(I have thought of many examples with which to prove myself wrong).

    So, Children of the Full Moon (much like Hotel Transylvania,, in this one respect), examines the idea of the werewolf pack in such a British way. I could just hug those made for TV films. (I also have a soft spot for Blood & Chocolate, but only because of the Steppenwolf reference.)

    I was also fascinated by the idea of cultural guilt for the death of native British wolves. I can’t say I feel personally guilty, I wonder if the proximity of wild areas so close to cities does affect the British psyche.

    Not a werewolf programme, but I’d strongly advise the series Children of the Stones in reflection on that point.

  4. Meg says:

    I loved an american werewolf in Paris. Its very funny.

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