A reporter who has had an affair with the daughter of the U.S. President is sent to Hungary. There he is bitten by a werewolf, and then gets transferred back to Washington, where he gets a ... See full summary »
The President of the United States has been bitten by a werewolf and is loose on the streets of Washington on a killing rampage! This comedy/horror/political satire is also a 'green movie,'... See full summary »
Marc Evan Jackson,
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A reporter who has had an affair with the daughter of the U.S. President is sent to Hungary. There he is bitten by a werewolf, and then gets transferred back to Washington, where he gets a job as press assistant to the President. Then bodies start turning up in D.C. . . . Written by
Hosted by Elvira Mistress of the Dark on her show "Movie Macabre" on November 21st 1981. See more »
At about the 47 minute mark, the werewolf bursts out of the darkness at center screen to attack the Hippy Chick in the phone booth. Unfortunately, the actor, as he mounts the stairs from the left seconds before to get into position, breaks out of the light shadow enough to distract from the 'boo' effect. See more »
Jack, would you please quit scratching the palms of your hands? It's just not manly.
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As you can probably guess from the title alone, "Werewolf of Washington" is basically a direct take on "The Wolf Man" story, shaped into a kind of political satire.
We join press secretary Jack Whittier on assignment in Hungary, where his girlfriend buys him a silver cane with a wolf's head handle. When his car breaks down he encounters some strange gypsies, and is attacked by a wolf which he beats to death with his cane. After the wolf is dead it changes back into human form, but the police don't even arrest him for murder. Jack is convinced that there is some kind of a government cover-up going on, but a gypsy woman tells him that he has become a werewolf, cursed with the sign of the pentagram ("Oh, so the pentagon's involved?"). He then returns to Washington, and finds that a series of people he meets are murdered in animal-like attacks ...
This movie does have a lot of very funny and memorable moments. The "phone booth" attack and most of the scenes with the president (particularly the bowling alley sequence) rank particularly highly, and this is certainly a film you won't forget in a hurry. It's one of the most original werewolf movies I've seen in a long time. The acting is surprisingly good considering how incompetent some aspects of the film appear to be, and that's where a lot of the comedy comes from. Dean Stockwell gives an excellent, nervous performance reminiscent of Lon Chaney Jr, and Biff McGuire as the president is just great.
However, it isn't all good news ... it was directed by Milton Moses Ginsberg, who seems primarily to have worked as an editor but has directed several obscure movies (his first movie "Coming Apart" actually appears quite popular critically). The film-making isn't terrible, but it's not really of professional quality -- in some scenes you can even catch that elusive shadow of the cameraman. Considering it was made by an editor, the movie is slow-moving and doesn't flow as well as it should, and some of the cuts just don't work at all. The dialogue is pretty clunky most of the time, although there are some clever plays on words. It's a political satire made at a time when it was fashionable to attack the administration, so of course there's plenty of topical humour going on.
Yes, it's silly and it's cheap and it's pretty incompetent, but it's also a lot of fun. I'm even tempted to give it a higher rating, but I might not live that down. Just see it if you want some quick laughs.
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