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Attack of the Werewolves - Blu-ray Review

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Attack of the Werewolves - Blu-ray Review

3 stars

An American Werewolf in London has never been equalled for this reviewer in the 31 years since its release. No werewolf film since has come close to matching its combination of scares and offbeat humour. The experience of laughing your ass off and then jumping out of your seat made that a very special and very rare experience.

The Spaniards, from what I’ve read, love their werewolves too, and it was this reviewer’s pleasure to be given Lobos de Arga (or Wolves of Arga) to review. While I stand by the previous paragraph that no movie, NONE, has reached the awesomeness of Werewolf in London, this film has something very cool to offer: laughs.

Called Attack of the Werewolves in the UK and Game of Werewolves in the US, this Spanish made production tells the story of Tomás, a writer who returns to his ancestor’s old village to try and write a new novel. What he doesn’t know is he is the last descendant of a cursed family that holds the cure to releasing the village from lycanthropy. Shit goes bad.

This film is a riot. No, you’re not going to be scared at all by this film, but it is damn funny. The timing of the lead and his co-stars is very effective and natural; the story is fast paced and well-constructed. The dialogue is witty and well executed, mischievous, and, for the most part, universal in its appeal. Characterisation is solid, with no one jarring or screaming artifice in this rather over the top jaunt.

Gore hounds will not be satiated, but this is hardly a film trying to out-gross, with subtler methods employed to depict the many slayings that occur throughout. What does impress is the actual werewolves; with the suits and make up suspending disbelief and accomplishing an effective foreboding. There’s no Rick Baker jaw dropping transformation scene, but when those lycanthropes do appear they do their job in spades.

The limited production value is evident, not only from the 500 contributing company’s logos before the film starts, but throughout the movie itself; however, the filmmakers have wisely chosen to spend their cash where it counts and it works.

All in all, this film is a good time at the movies. Hopefully you don’t have any aversions to reading subtitles (avoid the horrid English dub), and if you do, give this one a try anyway. Language isn’t always a barrier, and the filmmakers here know the language of film quite well. This is not a horror classic, or even a comedy classic, but it’s one of the more enjoyable werewolf misadventures this reviewer has seen in many years. The Spaniards have delivered impressively here.

Attack of the Werewolves - Blu-ray ReviewMPAA Rating: Unrated.
Runtime:
98 mins
Director
: Juan Martínez Moreno
Writer
: Juan Martínez Moreno
Cast:
Gorka Otxoa, Carlos Areces, Secun de la Rosa
Genre
: Horror
Tagline:
Game of Werewolves
Memorable Movie Quote:
Distributor:
No theatrical release
Blu-ray Distributor:
Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment
Official Site:
Release Date:
No theatrical release
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
October 8, 2012

Synopsis: After 15 years, Tomas, a not very successful writer, comes back to the village in Galicia where his family comes from, Arga, apparently to get an award. But he doesn't know the real reason why he is there, to end with an old curse that is been haunting the village for the last hundred years.

Attack of the Werewolves - Blu-ray Review

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Available on Blu-ray - October 8, 2012
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
Subtitles
: English
Audio:
Spanish: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1; Spanish: LPCM 2.0
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; Single disc (1 BD)
Region Encoding: B/2

The MPEG-4 AVC encoded 1080p picture is a crisp and sanitised modern offering that on the one hand looks great and on the other shows some of the limits in the production’s budget. It has great contrast, shows the digitally shot movie’s actors in flattering, natural skin tones, but falls flat on very dark shots, with crush and banding also affection rapid motion shots. Hardly noticeable, really, to those who aren’t looking for it.

Sound offer two lossless tracks – the natural Spanish version and an awful English dub getting the same offerings of a DTS-HD 5.1 mix or a Stereo LPCM mix – with the DTS mix being superior by leaps and bounds. Great directional mix, immersive and generous with base; achieves immersion and sells more than one or two gags throughout.

Extras: non-existent. I don’t count a trailer, where I hear reports that, although the UK disk works in US players, the trailer doesn’t? Shit really. Would have been nice to see some input from this impressive filmmakers. The lenticular slipcover impressively makes this film look expensive and flash.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • None

Special Features:

  • None

 

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