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The Curse of the Werewolf (1961)

Approved | | Horror | 7 June 1961 (USA)
In 18th Century Spain, an adopted boy becomes a werewolf and terrorizes the inhabitants of his town.

Director:

Terence Fisher

Writers:

Anthony Hinds (screenplay) (as John Elder), Guy Endore (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Clifford Evans ... Alfredo
Oliver Reed ... Leon
Yvonne Romain ... Servant Girl
Catherine Feller ... Cristina
Anthony Dawson ... The Marques Siniestro
Josephine Llewellyn Josephine Llewellyn ... The Marquesa
Richard Wordsworth Richard Wordsworth ... The Beggar
Hira Talfrey Hira Talfrey ... Teresa
Justin Walters Justin Walters ... Young Leon
John Gabriel John Gabriel ... The Priest
Warren Mitchell ... Pepe Valiente
Anne Blake ... Rosa Valiente
George Woodbridge ... Dominique
Michael Ripper ... Old Soak
Ewen Solon ... Don Fernando
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Storyline

In Spain, Leon is born on Christmas day to a mute servant girl who was raped by a beggar. His mother dies giving birth and he is looked after by Don Alfredo. As a child Leon becomes a werewolf after having been taken hunting. As a young man, he works in a wine cellar and falls in love with the owner's daughter Cristina. One full moon, he again turns into a werewolf and terrifies the town. Written by Will Gilbert

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

THIS SUMMER'S NEW BIG THRILL! See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 June 1961 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Curse of Siniestro See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hammer Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the documentary Flesh and Blood: The Hammer Heritage of Horror (1994) the Spanish setting for this film was forced upon writer Anthony Hinds after Michael Carreras had the studio back-lot dressed for a film about the Spanish Inquisition. This film was not produced because the Catholic League of Decency threatened to ban it. See more »

Goofs

When Leon is taken to the bawdy bar or nightclub, a modern (twentieth-century) roulette wheel is seen with gamblers surrounding it. Since the story takes place in the early to mid-eighteenth century, it would have been impossible for the roulette wheel to be there. Even earlier iterations of the roulette wheel only existed in Europe during the very late eighteenth century. Complicating issues further, roulette was outlawed in Spain throughout much of the twentieth century; and, roulette wheels were extraordinarily expensive. It would have been exceptional for a small village to have access to a roulette wheel even as late as the early-twentieth century. Suffice it to say that the roulette wheel and table's presence in the film is highly ahistorical. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Eyes of the Werewolf (1999) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
How (or is that "howl") did they always come up with something so neat?
3 April 2006 | by Lee EisenbergSee all my reviews

I think that more than anything, "The Curse of the Werewolf" does what too many werewolf movies fail to do: offer an explanation of how the first werewolf got created. Apparently, if someone is conceived under rather unpleasant circumstances, that person is a lycanthrope. After a beggar gets imprisoned in 18th century Spain, he rapes the jailer's daughter. She dies in childbirth, but her son Leon is raised by a nobleman. Sure enough, Leon is a werewolf. As an adult, Leon (Oliver Reed) tries to control himself, but unfortunately can't.

This is another addition to Hammer's cool filmography. It shows Leon's inner torment, knowing what will happen every full moon. As for associating Spain with werewolves, that country of course produced actor Paul Naschy, who has made a career out of playing werewolves; Portland's own Movie Madness even has a section devoted to him.


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