Posted: 10/22/2010


Never Cry Werewolf


by Barry Meyer

Fright Night Meets the Werewolf

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Nothing can ruin a day more than having a killer werewolf move next door. So, if it ever happens to you, just ask yourself What would Hercules do? Answer — kick its ass.

Nina Dobrev (of Degrassi and Vampire Diaries fame) can’t quite figure out her new studly next door neighbor with the 5:00 shadow on his palms. But, with a couple clicks of the computer mouse and a rocking montage soundtrack, she discovers her answer — he’s a werewolf! Good investigative enthusiasm!! But, what to do, what to do? Well, try borrowing the plotline from Fright Night and go after that TV big game hunter (Kevin Sorbo) you just saw on the commercial. Maybe he can help you.

Wait… I’ve seen this plot before.

Never Cry Werewolf debuted on the SyFy Channel (back when it was the Sci-Fi Channel), but with all the bleeped out curses, they obviously had higher expectations for this flick. But, with the kid-centric characters and dialogue, it started looking more like a Nickelodeon entry. High school gal gets into supernatural trouble, Mom is clueless, little brother is a smartass, music is hip. But then things start getting a little weird. Not plot wise, but questionable occurences that make you wonder just what the hell the filmmakers were thinking.

No doubt that high school kids get crushes on grown-ups, but the relationship between Dobrev’s Loren and the nasty neighbor wolfman Jared (Peter Stebbings) gets a lot creepier than the usual monster movie creepiness. For one thing, Stebbings the actor is nearly 20 years Dobrev’s senior, and his character is some 200 years older, as well. Kinda… wrong.

Makes you wonder just what writer John Sheppard and director Brenton Spenser were thinking. Things ride along pretty calmly at first. The moms get all frisky when they meet the new neighbor Jared, but the cougar attitude doesn’t really wash, since they’re all the same generation. The school girls get all breathy after seeing Loren straddled on the back of Jared’s hog, wishing they could hold on tight, as well. And it even seems okay when Loren, who’s been spying on her neighbor to keep a count of his victims, spies him in the shower (note: but not okay that he revels in it). But then things get real dicey come the climax. Jared comes a-knocking at Little Red’s door the night of the full moon and rambles off something about a wolf marking its territory. With his beer bottle tipped and dangling in his hand by his belt buckle, he pours the ale on the floor. Holy phallic metaphor, Batman! It gets, um…worse… After pinning her to a chair, he orders her to take her top off! Oh, but she’s wearing a sports bra — so that’s all good. And — oh, he only asks this small favor because, he mentions, that he doesn’t want anything to interfere when he chomps into her neck (funny how that didn’t seem to matter when he dug into the other victims, some wearing fall jackets). Then comes the groping and nibbling. Seriously, what were you on when you wrote this Sheppard? He must’ve just gotten out of a Larry Clark retrospective, or something.

I’m not sure if I could even say this movie was enjoyable. It seemed fairly innocuous, and fun for a night when nothing better was on. That was until Woody Allen showed up to turn it all into a salacious dirty old man dream. No, Nickelodeon it’s not…. Definitely more for the Family Channel.

Barry Meyer Barry Meyer was born to the world as the first scientifically produced Cathode Tube baby. He’s a film critic, videographer, editor, and writer, residing in Jamestown, NY.

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