Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Werewolf in a Girls' Dormitory (1961)

This Austro-Italian offering, originally titled Lycanthropus, is much less lurid than its English language title suggests.  Assuming you don't have a neck-to-knee nightgown fetish, that is.  Alas, it's similarly tepid in the story stakes: not only are the 'action' sequences awkward and slightly comical, but the mystery of the werewolf's identity is very clumsily executed (though it is not as clumsy as some of the dialogue).

We begin with a new staff member arriving at a women's reformatory.  As he's a reasonably handsome man, his arrival attracts some attention from the inmates.  We learn that the new staff member is not exactly what he appears: he is in fact a disgraced doctor who had a patient die in mysterious circumstances.  It is fortunate for him that the man running the reformatory believes strongly in second chances, or he might not have been able to find work at all.  Disgraced Doctor is obviously going to be our leading man.  It's a shame he has all the charisma of a lump of wood.

There's a fair bit of shady business going on at the reformatory, including the whole werewolf thing, but I'm not going to bother giving a detailed description because it frankly all amounts to rather dull minutiae.  Suffice it to say that the script's attempts to cast suspicion on various characters only serves to make it obvious who the werewolf really is - and that's before the film starts really killing people off.

There's not much to recommend here.

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