LEGEND OF THE WEREWOLF
All of Tyburns films draw upon the influence of Hammer. This is particularly so with Legend of the Werewolf, which could almost be a remake of Hammers The Curse of the Werewolf (1961). Notedly both Legend of the Werewolf and Curse of the Werewolf were written by Hammer producer Anthony Hinds under his regular pseudonym of John Elder. Anthony Hinds echoes most of Curse of the Werewolf in his script the birth of the half-human, half-wolf child; his growth to manhood and the development of lycanthropy with the onset of puberty; his journey away from home to the big city; his love for a girl. In both films, Hinds/Elder also ties the emergence of the werewolf to sexual frustration in Curse of the Werewolf, it is when the hero is forbidden to see the girl he loves and he goes to a brothel; here it is when he follows her to a brothel and discovers that she is a courtesan. Certainly, Legend of the Werewolf goes back closer to some parts of the Guy Endore novel The Werewolf of Paris (1933) that Hinds had substantially departed from when he adapted it as the basis of Curse of the Werewolf. Hinds has also combines the werewolf story with elements from Francois Truffauts The Wild Child (1969) about a true life feral child that was discovered in 19th Century France.
Unfortunately, Freddie Francis, one of the more underrated directors from the Anglo-horror school, is not on top form. Legend of the Werewolf is plodding on most regards. The werewolf makeup effects are not particularly scary. The attacks are inadequately conveyed through red filtered subjective camerawork and numerous closeups on the fangs. It is only Peter Cushing, who has a few comedic moments as a cheerful pathologist, who rises to the occasion. Tap-dancer and sometimes actor Roy Castle, who appeared in Freddie Franciss Dr Terrors House of Horrors (1964), has an amusing cameo as a photographer.
Freddie Franciss other genre films are:- Vengeance/The Brain (1962), Paranoiac (1962), Nightmare (1963), Dr Terrors House of Horrors (1964), The Evil of Frankenstein (1964), Hysteria (1965), The Skull (1965), The Psychopath (1966), The Deadly Bees (1967), They Came from Beyond Space (1967), Torture Garden (1967), Dracula Has Risen from the Grave (1968), Mumsy, Nanny, Sonny & Girly (1969), Trog (1970), The Vampire Happening (1971), Tales from the Crypt (1972), Tales That Witness Madness (1972), Craze (1973), The Creeping Flesh (1973), Son of Dracula (1974), The Ghoul (1975), The Doctor and the Devils (1985) and The Dark Tower (1987).
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