I'm guessing that most people reading reviews of this DVD package will be doing so to find out more about The Werewolf of London. So I'll start with this film first. It was Universal's first attempt at a werewolf film, so a lot of the genre's trappings, such as silver to kill the wolf hadn't actually been drempt up yet. So it makes for a bit of a refreshing change to see this film use it's own werewolf 'mythology'. Henry Hull is the main character. A botinist who, while searching in Tibet for a plant that only flowers by the light of the moon, is attacked and bitten by a wolf creature. He returns to England with some samples of the plant, and attempts to make them bloom with the use of his lunar rays machine. (Not sure why he couldn't just wait for the moon to do the job for him - but that's never really explained!) A second scientist of strange oriental persuasion is soon pestering him to see the plant. He explains that the plant is an antidote to "Werewolfery" (their word, not mine) and that he knows of 2 such cases of werewolves in London at this very time.
I won't spoil the rest of the story, suffice to say that the overall feel of this film has much more in common with Dr Jekyl and Mr Hyde, than it does with the later Wolf Man films. Hull doesn't play the character for sympathy as Lon Chaney does, but rather he's seen wrestling with the inner demons that drive him to murder. Highly recommended.
The other film of the package is of course the Wolf Man. Lon Chaney, to my mind, never really convinces as an actor. He plays the role a bit on the hammy side for my tastes. Although there's no denying that the look of the film is fabulous. Lots of dark twisted forests with mist licking round the feet, or paws, of the characters as they flee for their lives.
Anyone with a love for gothic horror will love to own these two films.
Fangtastic!! (hoho, how could I resist!!)