The Werewolf of London

Watch The Werewolf of London

  • Passed
  • 1935
  • 1 hr 15 min
  • 6.3  (6,434)

The Werewolf of London is a classic horror film from 1935, directed by Stuart Walker, featuring Henry Hull, Warner Oland, and Valerie Hobson. The Columbia Pictures production is one of the earliest werewolf movies in cinema history and follows the story of an English botanist named Dr. Wilfred Glendon (Henry Hull) who, while on an expedition in Tibet, is attacked by a werewolf. The movie explores his transformation into a werewolf, his struggle to combat the werewolf curse, and the scientific and romantic challenges he faces along the way.

The movie opens with Dr. Glendon's expedition to Tibet, where he hopes to find the rare Mariphasa plant, which he believes will help him unlock the secret to longevity. Dr. Glendon is warned by the locals of the existence of a werewolf, but he brushes it off as superstition. During his search for the Mariphasa plant, he is attacked by a werewolf and later bitten. Though he manages to fight back and kill the werewolf, he is now cursed and becomes a werewolf himself whenever there is a full moon.

Dr. Glendon returns to London and continues his research on the Mariphasa plant in order to find a cure for his condition. In the process, he is forced to keep his affliction a secret from his wife, Lisa (Valerie Hobson), and from Paul Ames (Warner Oland), a fellow botanist who is also working on the same plant research. Paul Ames, however, suspects that something is up with Dr. Glendon and begins to spy on him.

As Dr. Glendon's condition worsens, he begins to fear for his own safety and that of others around him. He runs into another werewolf but can't bring himself to kill it. Instead, he studies the creature in the hopes of finding a cure. Meanwhile, Paul Ames, who has been getting more and more suspicious of Dr. Glendon, discovers the truth about his condition and begins to blackmail him. Worst of all, Dr. Glendon realizes that Lisa has fallen in love with Paul.

The Werewolf of London builds to an exciting climax, with Dr. Glendon confronting his inner demons as well as outside threats. The movie's technical achievements are remarkable for their time, especially in the make-up and special effects used to depict Dr. Glendon's transformation into a werewolf. The movie's themes of science vs. superstition, as well as the fear of the other lurking within ourselves, are also noteworthy for their complexity and relevance even today.

Henry Hull delivers an engaging performance as Dr. Glendon, bringing a certain pathos to the character who is torn between his scientific curiosity and his fear of what he has become. Warner Oland, who is best known for his role as Charlie Chan, is equally impressive as Paul Ames, a complicated character who is both friend and foe to Dr. Glendon. Valerie Hobson, in the role of Lisa, adds a touch of romance to the film, although her character's sudden love for Paul Ames seems a bit out of place.

In addition to its technical and artistic merits, The Werewolf of London was also a commercial success, paving the way for many more werewolf movies in Hollywood. Its influence can be seen in films such as The Wolf Man (1941) and An American Werewolf in London (1981). Although the plot may seem predictable by today's standards, the movie's legacy as a pioneering entry in the horror genre stands the test of time.

The Werewolf of London is a 1935 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 15 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.3.

The Werewolf of London
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 15 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.3  (6,434)