Werewolves Within is a comedy-horror movie based on the 2016 VR game, which itself draws inspiration from party games like Werewolf and Mafia. The cast is led by Sam Richardson as Forest Ranger Finn Wheeler and Milana Vayntrub as Postal Person Cecily Moore. The Werewolves Within movie is a surprisingly fun thriller, but not without its flaws.
The idea behind Werewolves Within is simple. The small town of Beaverfield is currently embroiled in a debate over a proposed pipeline and everyone has a different stake in getting it built or blocking it. The setup is window dressing, though. The main intent is to give you a cast of characters who represent some of the most annoying clichés you can find and then amplifies them tenfold. Most of them never develop a personality past these rough stereotypes. But, you’re not supposed to like these people, with a few exceptions. You are, in fact, supposed to enjoy them slowly getting picked off over the course of the movie, and not feel bad about it because they’re terrible people. Even if you find a character you identify with, it’s hard to be offended by the movie’s evisceration of their beliefs because of how obscenely over the top it treats them. Of particular note are Sarah Burns and George Basil as the town’s meth heads, who give energy to almost every scene they’re in, even as you root for the werewolf to eat them.
The primary weaknesses of Werewolves Within is that it spends a bit too long on the setup, and tends to drag in the middle. A good chunk of the second act is made up of all the townspeople coming together to point fingers at one another and not actually advance the plot at all. Once the movie gets past this slower period things kick in to high gear and the third act is pretty much just pure violence mixed with a few one-liners and dark comedy moments. The movie is at its best when it allows the actors to ham it up. If they tried to treat this with a more realistic tone it would fall apart pretty quickly, especially since the majority of the cast seems pretty nonplussed by all the murders happening in rapid succession.
Werewolves Within Movie Review Final Thoughts:
Werewolves Within is a fun, brains-off movie that makes for a good group watch. Even though it is technically a mystery — the identity of the werewolf is saved to the very end — the movie doesn’t bother with much misdirection and it’s easy to figure out how it will go. But, your best bet is to not bother trying to get ahead of it and just enjoy the ride. You’re far more likely to notice the myriad of plot holes floating around, and, frankly, this isn’t the sort of movie that’s bothered by that. Gather some friends, pop some popcorn and settle in for a movie that finds a solid balance of humor, violence, and just a bit of tension.