She-Wolf of London Blu-ray Review

She-Wolf: Princess of Power

“There’s no man in our house!” says June Lockheart to her fiancee, noting her fears as a series of murders emerge around her home. While giving women the starring role, She-Wolf of London is still a product of the ‘40s. Women helpless, men strong.

Underneath is a unique tale, structured bravely considering no actual werewolves make an appearance. Rather, it’s their idea, their lore, and their mysticism at play. It’s Universal’s fault for putting the monsters into mainstream culture; they can get away with a movie about the mere idea of people transforming into violent creatures who prey on small children.

There’s an angle to She-Wolf of London, potentially a look at how the pressures of young womanhood take their mental toll. Lockheart spends much of the movie in bed, terrified to leave less she have to face her soon-to-be-husband. Because of unusual clues fond every morning, Lockheart is convinced she’s responsible for knocking off local citizens. Add in a supposed family curse and the frothing local media, and the she-wolf fear takes hold.

She-Wolf of London tells a story of people desperate to maintain status, wealth, and power no matter the body count

She-Wolf of London finds some of the atmosphere notable in Universal’s classic horror films. A foggy park is a looming presence, often surrounded by London’s police. Lockheart’s home, in which she lives with her aunt, is capable of appearing in any genre offering.

Like many of the Universal catalog, this is a story of well to do people. Mixed with the loss of sanity, soon She-Wolf of London shifts to a tale of deception. Less this family lose their place in society because of a murderer in their ranks, suspicion is kept secret. It’s plausible, despite the absurdity of the werewolf legend. She-Wolf of London tells a story of people desperate to maintain status, wealth, and power no matter the body count. When in this context, the reveal of the true killer is expected and obvious, but also satisfying in that audiences see a sneering, high-society member get their comeuppance.

Movies in this line often deal with protecting the rich. They take place inside lavish castles with butlers and maids and grand china. She-Wolf of London has those, but breaks free in a creative twist. Protection backfires, and leads to a brief, climatic death. Granted, that comes after the villain unnecessarily spills their plot for no discernible reason and after the mystery fails to hold interest earlier, but at least it’s taking a chance. In the late ‘40s, that’s the last thing a Universal horror movie seemed willing to do.

Video

One of the weaker offerings in the Universal Classic Monsters Collection, She-Wolf of London suffers from visible processing. Signs of light edge enhancement in the form of dark outlines on high contrast edges gives this one an edgy, unnatural look. That’s paired with some low-pass filtering, leaving behind a digital residue and dropping fidelity.

Grain is present, although minor and gritty. Some banding comes into view. This then connects to what looks like a lower resolution scan, muddy and imprecise. Maybe that’s the processing though.

Minor specks and scratches follow the full runtime. Nothing turns severe, but another clean-up wouldn’t hurt. At least the gray scale holds up, offering a variety of shades, deep black levels, and notable contrast where possible.

Audio

Rudimentary audio work provides a serviceable, clean audio mix. The DTS-HD track produces satisfying music, with rich lows and distortion-free highs.

Dialog maintains consistency and precision. It’s an organic, aged track within the expectations.

Extras

Paired on the same disc with Werewolf of London, the only bonus is a trailer.

She-Wolf of London
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Extras
3

Movie

A subversive effort given the title, She-Wolf of London is about werewolf legends and how they ingrain themselves into society.

The 15 unaltered images below represent the Blu-ray. For an additional seven She-Wolf of London screenshots, early access to all screens (plus the 15,000+ already in our library), 50+ exclusive 4K UHD reviews, and more, support us on Patreon.