The howling vs. American Werewolf
What are your top 3 werewolf movies?
If you didn’t say 1985 Michael J. Fox classic Teen Wolf, hang your head in shame (Go, Beavers!). But no doubt most fans of the genre mentioned a film from 1981. That’s because in 1981, we got what are generally considered the two best werewolf movies of all time. If you’ve read Laszlo, you’ll have spotted the nods to the John Landis classic An American Werewolf in London, but it was actually the other offering from that year that inspired The Death of Laszlo Breyer. Joe Dante’s The Howling. Featuring Dee Wallace and Christopher Stone (who went on to appear in 1983 Stephen King adaptation Cujo, which I strongly recommend - both book and film), there was one tiny scene in there that was the seed for Laszlo.
I’ll try to keep this as spoiler-free as I can. In the film a serial killer is shot and killed by police. But when they go to check on the body at the morgue, it’s gone. See, the man shot dead by police is a werewolf (not a spoiler, don’t worry) but because silver bullets weren’t standard police issue, ol’ Wolfman Eddie came back from the dead. That idea fascinated me.
In The Howling, the full moon is not part of the lore (just like silver bullets aren’t in American Werewolf), so he could just change into a werewolf any time. But I wondered what would happen if he did need a full moon. If he was shot and killed and then buried. I wondered what it would be like if, every full moon, that body became a wolf and that broken body kept awakening until it was strong enough to escape.
It was actually the death of Laszlo Breyer that led me to the start of his story.
'The Death of Laszlo Breyer' is available now from Amazon in ebook and paperback.
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In this blog I'll be bringing to you short tales of things that go bump in the night, true stories of weird and unexplained events, and the real-life news of all things odd and macabre, and entertain you along the way.