Thursday, December 8, 2022

‘Werewolf By Night’ Review: An Original MCU Entry Filled With Nostalgia [SPOILER-FREE]

TELEVISIONDISNEY+'Werewolf By Night' Review: An Original MCU Entry Filled With Nostalgia

Werewolf By Night, the newest entry into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is clawing its way to Disney+ soon.

As a lifelong horror fan, I have long awaited the introduction of all things supernatural and spooky to the ever-growing live-action repertoire of Marvel Studios. While the Moon Knight series dove into some of the scarier components within Marvel, Werewolf By Night is the first full creature feature, and all those involved have to be commended for committing to stylistic choices that invoke the exact tones you’d expect from a black and white, classic monster flick.

The special is directed by frequent Marvel Studios composer Michael Giacchino, who makes his directing debut for the studio with the project. The level of detail required in composing is only reflected in Giacchino’s directing style as well, and he has once again delivered a hauntingly beautiful score that flawlessly matches the mood set by the cinematography. It is my sincere hope that he is allowed to continue his work as a director, as he truly has something to offer in the position and would make an excellent choice for any future Marvel Studios entries that involve monsters.

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As is to be expected from any film or television entry that touts the word “horror,” there is plenty of blood in Werewolf By Night — several scenes including splatters that made me say “cool” aloud. Most of the special is in black and white, and the effect is a toned-down version of the brutality pictured. The stunts and fight choreography is reminiscent of previous Marvel entries such as Captain America: The Winter Soldier in terms of the level of expertise and care that went into them, while also managing to add a new level of brutality that comes along with monster mayhem.

The special stars Gael García Bernal and Laura Donnelly, featuring the live-action debut of several characters such as the titular character, Elsa Bloodstone, and Man-Thing. Each of these characters are exceptional additions to the MCU, and each of the actors that bring these characters to screen provide excellent performances. García Bernal is an incredibly endearing Jack Russell, portraying the contrasting personalities between the man and the monster he becomes by night — he is goofy and charming as Jack, but devastatingly murderous as Werewolf — and hopefully this is a character we will see much more in the future. Man-Thing, who has been a longtime fan-favorite from the comics side, will be an instant fan-favorite in live-action as well. With only a few minutes of screen time, he nearly manages to steal the show.

Overall, the 52-minute special is incredibly unique as an entry to the MCU and will surely win over viewers who may not consider themselves horror fans, but brimming with nostalgia that will make horror fans feel right at home.

Werewolf By Night is available to stream tomorrow exclusively on Disney+. Check out the trailer below.

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