- 1 hr 55 min
Wolfen is a 1981 horror/mystery film directed by Michael Wadleigh, based on the novel of the same name by Whitley Strieber. The film stars Albert Finney as Dewey Wilson, a New York City police detective who investigates a series of grisly murders that have taken place in a rundown area of the city. Diane Venora plays his partner and love interest, Rebecca Neff, while Edward James Olmos portrays the Native American Indian Eddie Holt, who provides the detectives with valuable insight into the supernatural force that is behind the killings. The film begins with the brutal murders of a wealthy businessman and his wife in a park in New York City. The police initially suspect that the killings were the work of a gang of drug dealers, but when similar murders occur in a nearby slum, Dewey and Rebecca begin to suspect that something more sinister is going on. They are assisted in their investigation by Eddie Holt, a Native American Indian who has a deep knowledge of the ancient legends and rituals of his people. As the investigation progresses, it becomes clear that the murders were not carried out by human beings, but by a supernatural force that has been awakened by the destruction of the natural environment. This force is represented by a pack of wolves who have evolved into a new form of consciousness, and who have the ability to take on human form. The wolves are somehow tied to the Native American Indians, who have been driven from their lands and are now living in poverty and squalor in the city. The film is notable for its strong environmental themes, as well as its focus on the plight of Native American Indians in modern society. It also features a unique and innovative use of special effects, which were cutting-edge at the time of the film's release. The scenes depicting the wolves' point of view, as they hunt down their prey, are particularly striking, and lend the film a sense of urgency and tension. The performances in the film are top-notch, with Albert Finney delivering a nuanced and compelling performance as Dewey Wilson, a detective who is struggling to cope with his own personal demons while trying to solve the case. Diane Venora is also excellent as Rebecca Neff, who provides a strong counterpoint to Dewey's gruff and cynical demeanor. Edward James Olmos is also memorable as Eddie Holt, a character who is deeply connected to the supernatural forces at work in the film. Overall, Wolfen is a unique and engrossing horror film that manages to combine elements of supernatural horror, police procedural, and social commentary. It is a film that is both thought-provoking and terrifying, and is one of the standout horror films of the 1980s.