It took a lot for me to finally decide to watch Wolfcop. I realize I am probably in the minority, but for the most part werewolf horror movies do nothing for me. I am never in a great hurry to watch one. The same was true when I first saw a shirt from the movie Wolfcop posted on the Fright-Rags site. I thought the art was cool, but not being into werewolves, I figured I’d never watch it. For some reason that movie kept popping up for me on Facebook and other social media outlets. I had read the description and found it intriguing. Eventually my love for the over-the-top ridiculousness of grindhouse cult classics led me to give this film a try. And I am so glad I did.
Wolfcop is an independent Canadian film written and directed by Lowell Dean. The film follows Lou Garou (played by Leo Fafard), a small town cop who struggles with laziness, apathy, and alcoholism. While investigating a noise complaint one night Lou stumbles upon a bizarre occult ritual. Garou is knocked out and wakes up the next day in his bed. He can’t remember much from the night before, but he discovers he has a pentagram carved into his stomach. The next night Garou, with his newly heightened senses, transforms into a werewolf while visiting the local bar. With some help from his friend Willie Higgins (Jonathan Cherry), he finds out that there is an occult ceremony in which a werewolf is sacrificed can strengthen the magic of shapeshifters. Even while he is in his transformed state, Lou uses his human intellect and continues fighting crime. He eventually realizes that all isn’t what it seems in the small town of Woodhaven, and he soon finds out the secret of his new “condition.”
Lowell Dean’s film is a lot of fun, from beginning to end. The story is as ridiculous as ever, but it is carried on in a way that is thoroughly entertaining. The acting is superb, especially given that the cast list isn’t littered with huge names or genre veterans. In true cult fashion moments of hilarity are interspersed with moments of unrelenting action and violence, creating a stew of grindhousey goodness sure to satisfy even the marginal fan of the genre. The use of practical effects in the film, especially during the incredible transformation scenes, are top notch. It is obvious that FX wizard Emersen Ziffle is a fan of the 80’s style practical effects and gore, complete with eye gouging! The backstory of the occultist shapeshifters is also a wonderful asset to the film, and the eventual plot twist is most welcomed.
My only complaint about the film is that it is a little short. Excluding the credits, it’s about an hour and fifteen minutes. I would have loved to have seen some more scenes of Lou as the wolf fighting crime. What was there was a wonderful scene of police brutality, and one or two more similar scenes could’ve brought the film closer to the typical runtime of an hour and a half.
After viewing Wolfcop, I’ve got one thing to say: Watch it now, don’t be like me and put it off. I wasn’t sure what I was getting into when I decided to watch it, but what I got was ultimately an entertaining ridiculousness, filled with blood, guts, and laughs. At the end I was left wanting more, but I was happy to learn that there was a sequel made last year (called Another Wolfcop), and it should be hitting VOD services sometime this year. Until then, go watch the first one. This film is destined to be a cult classic!