Several murders have been committed in a London park and the victims have been savagely clawed about the throat. The police believe that a woman is a killer, and perhaps she is a (she) werewolf. Heiress Phyllis Allenby, fears she is the criminal, based on the family legend of the "Allenby Curse" which was the belief that members of the family at times assumed the form of a wolf. Her aunt's constant reminders to her of the "Allenby Curse" only serves to keep her niece's fears alive.Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Largely shot on Universal's old "Hacienda" set, used on many of the studio's "B" westerns. See more »
The first time Martha Winthrop brings up a glass of milk to Phyllis Allenby, the glass is half full as she walks up the stairs to the bedroom, but after she opens the door and enters the room, the glass is nearly full to the top. See more »
As it is always marketed as a horror film, and part of the Universal Classic Horror Films, the disappointment it causes in horror fans is very understandable. "She-Wolf of London" is not, despite its name, a horror movie in the classic sense of the word, it is more a typical "whodunit" mystery and an ancestor to the psychological thrillers of today.
In London, a mysterious series of murders is creating fear in the population and confusion in the police department as people speak of a killer werewolf. The news create shock in young Phyllis Allenby (a beautiful young June Lockhart), who beliefs she is the responsible as an ancient family legend states that the Allenby clan is cursed with Lycanthropy, the werewolf's curse. She isolates herself and denies watching everyone, even breaking her relationship with her boyfriend Barry Lanfield (Don Porter). Her aunt Marta Withrop (Sara Haden) takes advantage of this and tries to force her daughter Carol (Jan Wiley) to marry the wealthy Barry.
All this interesting plot gives room to a lot of development, sadly, the movie doesn't move too far away from the established formula and therefore we don't have a lot of chance to get empathy for the characters. This is its main problem, since what we have are two-dimensional characters and a lot of potential wasted.
The sets are outstanding and the movie is brilliantly photographed, the trademark of the Universal Studios at that time without a doubt; nevertheless, this technical features does not help to improve a movie that feels incomplete or undeveloped. The pacing is slow and the very few things happen making the experience boring and tiresome at times.
The acting is above average, but with so few development there are not many things to do with that material. June Lockhart looks amazing and beautiful, but her character is not fully explored in the script and she has no real chances of showing her talents. A real shame, since she as the main character should be the focal point of the movie.
Don Porter is unconvincing as the hero and his performance feels a bit wooden. Same thing with Jan Wiley. Nevertheless, Sara Haden does an outstanding job and truly gives a lesson of acting in her performance. Along the technical aspects, her acting is probably what makes the movie worthy.
Overall an average movie that also suffers from bad marketing, since it is really not a horror movie, but a classic "whudunit" mystery that while entertaining, it is really nothing impressive. 5/10. Quite average time killer.
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