“Werewolves Within” – Movie Review (Spoiler Free)

What happens when you take classic werewolf tropes and blend them with a murder/mystery aesthetic?  The result is a funny, bizarre, and bloody movie called Werewolves Within!

Not Your Typical Werewolf Movie
Based on the 2016 video game of the same name, Werewolves Within is far from other werewolf classics like An American Werewolf in London, The Howling, or Ginger Snaps.  It doesn’t deal with a character being bitten at the beginning and questioning their own sanity as they slowly descended in lycanthropy.

Those familiar with the video game won’t find the whodunnit angle surprising at all.

But that doesn’t mean it isn’t good.  Instead, the movie delivers on a genuinely funny and entertaining murder/mystery as a Park Ranger is transferred to a new town filled with secrets.  Shortly after arriving, people (and pets) start to disappear, and a blizzard keeps everyone in town trapped, and questioning who might be the killer (whom they discover might be a werewolf).

The snow provides both beautiful cinematography, as well as a compelling setting for keeping them all trapped there.  This movie will very quickly join the ranks of The Thing, The Shining, and 30 Days of Night as a go-to horror movie to watch when it’s snowing outside.

Excellent Ensemble
While some may be disappointed that we really don’t get much werewolf material until the third act (and even then, it’s mostly a CGI transformation), the movie works mostly because of the amazing and hilarious cast assembled.  Led primarily by Sam Richardson and Milana Vayntrub, the cast has a solid chemistry with a lot of back and forth.

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They have a quirky dynamic that’s both adorable and kind of relatable to anyone who’s awkward.

Granted, some of the characters are a bit stereotypically written (particularly the rednecks and the gay couple), but each actor is strong and funny enough in their own regard that their characters end up feeling like real people.

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There really isn’t a single weak link in the cast.

Navigating Nuance
All while the townspeople deal with this werewolf threat, there’s already a great tension around the pipeline that a developer wants to build and run through their town.  A great deal of the initial conflict comes from the debate between citizens.

Like any other movie that tries to deal with political issues, there are good and bad ways to portray it.  And while Werewolves Within is anything but subtle or nuanced, it does a decent job of showing each character’s motivations and that even though they disagree, they’re equally capable of being kind (and horrible to each other).

Overall, Werewolves Within doesn’t quite have the wit of other whodunit classics like Clue or Knives Out, nor does it have enough werewolves to be a gem of that subgenre.  But it’s a fun movie that makes for an entertaining watch, at least once.  Okay, maybe twice so you can go back and watch for all the clues for the twist!

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It’s definitely a one of a kind movie!

What did you think of Werewolves Within?  What are some of your favorite werewolf movies?  Let us know in the comments!

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