6.3/10
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96 user 95 critic

Wolfen (1981)

A New York cop investigates a series of brutal deaths that resemble animal attacks.

Director:

Writers:

(based on the novel by), (screen story) | 3 more credits »

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2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Dehl Berti ...
...
Ross
Sam Gray ...
Mayor
Ralph Bell ...
Commissioner
Max M. Brown ...
Christopher van der Veer
...
Pauline van der Veer
Sarah Felder ...
Cicely Rensselaer
...
Morgue Attendant (as Reginald Vel Johnson)
...
Baldy
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Storyline

A city cop is assigned to solve a bizarre set of violent murders where it appears that the victoms were killed by animals. In his pursuit he learns of an Indian legend about wolf spirits. Written by K. Rose <rcs@texas.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It will tear the scream from your throat. See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 July 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A farkas  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$17,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,037,911, 26 July 1981, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$10,626,725
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (MegaSound encoding) (70 mm prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Orion Pictures were working on several projects with director Lindsay Anderson and hoped he would direct "Wolfen". See more »

Goofs

When the doctor is riding his motorbike through the tunnel and spots the wolf, he is mouthing "Help me," repeatedly, but we don't hear his voice. At the end, he says, "Oh my god," but is still mouthing, "Help me." See more »

Quotes

[about the wolves]
Old Indian: They're shiftless. They might be gods!
See more »


Soundtracks

Jitterbug Boy
Written by Tom Waits
Performed by Tom Waits
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
It's not wolves, it's Wolfen ...
28 July 2006 | by See all my reviews

Highly stylised account of territorial beings protecting their heritage from would be developers. Director Wadleigh offers a surreal, suspenseful tale where mysticism and folklore conjure a modern day nightmare for the residents of a New York city development precinct.

Finney is ideally cast as an unassuming police detective assigned to investigate the apparent ritual slayings of a billionaire developer, his wife and bodyguard in a New York park. Pulsating synthesisers and point-of-view audio-visual cinematography add a sophisticated dimension to this one of a kind movie, that benefits from an unusual cast who excel in their offbeat characterisations.

Perfectly cast is future "Manhunter" (Red Dragon) Tom Noonan as the over-protective zoologist, dancer Gregory Hines as the hip coroner, and Edward James Olmos as the misplaced American Indian whose mystical incantations reveal the true identity of the killer. Reginald Vel Johnson (of "Die Hard" fame) also features in an hilarious bit part as a morgue attendant.

The manufacturers of prosthetic, severed hands make a killing in this movie which revels in its measured use of black comedic undertones. But don't be fooled; this is still a thoughtful, sometimes graphic motion picture that entertains on many levels. The often poetic dialogue and haunting score should keep you curious about this movie enough to want to see it again and again. A real sleeper.


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