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Movie Review: Werewolf By Night

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What starts out as an atmospheric fifties murder mystery classic turns quickly into a violent survival of the fittest competition. Read on for a review of Werewolf by Night, an exciting movie short streaming on Disney Plus!

Disney Plus provided a screen in exchange for an honest review.

Werewolf by Night Disney Plus
WEREWOLF BY NIGHT, exclusively on Disney+. © 2022 MARVEL.

On a dark and moody night, five monster hunters come together at the home of Ulysses Bloodstone, following his death.  They are met with a challenge by his widow Verussa (Harriet Sansom Harris); kill a powerful monster, become the new leader and gain the power of the Bloodstone.  Ulysses’s daughter Elsa Bloodstone (Laura Donnelly) participates despite Verussa’s objection and the hunters decided on a massive maze.

Jack Russell (Gael Garcia Bernal) participates but has an ulterior motive.  As a werewolf himself, his goal is to free the “Ted” the powerful monster who has the Bloodstone embedded into his skin.  Elsa and Jack work together to free Ted but as Jack’s own monster form is revealed, Verussa works to exact revenge on her spoiled plan.

Werewolf by Night is unlike anything the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) or Disney Plus has previously released.  The majority of the film is shot in black and white and it’s significantly more violent than previous films.  The way the film is shot though, the camera doesn’t linger on the blood or violence for long.  Werewolf by night also has an atmospheric feel with black and white and smoky lighting.  It feels very much in the realm of Blade but unfortunately, that character doesn’t appear in Werewolf by Night.

The problem with Werewolf by Night is that it’s a bit rushed and we don’t get any backstory or character development.  Casual MCU viewers won’t understand Elsa’s disdain for the entire process or Jack Russell’s desire to save another monster despite being known as a killer of over 100.  I could sit through so many more of these movies set in the Bloodstone manor and maze, the set is that interesting.

Werewolf by Night Disney Plus
Laura Donnelly as Elsa Bloodstone in Marvel Studios’ WEREWOLF BY NIGHT, exclusively on Disney+. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2022 MARVEL.

Even with this criticism, Werewolf by Night works because it doesn’t rely on any of previous MCU storylines plus Donnelly and Garcia Bernal have fantastic chemistry.  Werewolf by Night is a unique addition to Disney Plus and the perfect short movie for the Halloween season.  

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