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'WolfCop' is howling good fun
4.5Overall Score

With a title like “WolfCop,” a certain breed of film arises from the depths of cinema history. Cult classics like “The Evil Dead,” “The Lost Boys,” and “Shaun of the Dead,” or cliché monster romps such as “Mega Shark vs. Crocosaurus” and “Spiders II: Breeding Ground.” Thankfully, “WolfCop” sides with the former bunch, brilliantly executing arguably the most challenging genre: horror comedy. Lowell Dean’s 2014 flick is an inspired blend of hilarity, horror, and the supernatural. A nuanced plot, clever dialogue, and a delicate mix of genres make “WolfCop” the next delightful cult classic horror comedy.

There’s an old adage, “don’t judge a book by its cover,” and by the same logic a movie by its poster. However, the “WolfCop” cover reeks of 80’s awesomeness, from the hot pink “Miami Vice” font title, to the epic graphic novel style backdrop. The tagline, “Here comes the fuzz,” sets the tone for the ensuing 79 minutes. The opening scene is one of the most memorable of any film. Lou Garou (Leo Fafard) is an alcoholic cop in the rural Canadian town Woodhaven. He awakens like every morning, hung-over, surrounded by beer and liquor bottles, and in bed with a half-naked woman. Lou proceeds to arrive at work in his routine manner: late.

WolfCop2014_posterWhile investigating the wacky claims from his buddy Willie (Johnathan Cherry), resident conspiracy theory buff and owner of the local gun and hunting store, Lou dismisses claims of occult happenings in town. When Terry Wallace (Ryland Alexander), candidate for Woodhaven Mayor, turns up dead, Lou begins suspecting foul play. With each new crime scene, there’s a feeling of familiarity, along with Lou’s heightened senses. His pal Willie shares the secret, as Lou probes the unraveling conspiracy which delves into the occult.

“WolfCop” may appear as a purely comedic venture, but it’s far more complex. Central to the film is a detailed plot, and a compelling narrative to boot. Lou, aka WolfCop, unearths an absurd scheme of treachery, similar to the ingenious story of “Hot Fuzz.” As the story unfolds, Lou speculates on connections between the cancellation Woodhaven’s annual Drink and Shoot, solar eclipses, and the disappearance of his father years ago. The finale packs several mind-boggling twists which burst forth as legitimate shocks.

The amusement inherent to “WolfCop,” derives from shrewd details, and a mix of stereotypes and inventive qualities. Are there one-liners? You bet, and they foster genuine guffaws. Yet the real humor lies in the subtleties that comprise the film. After becoming a werewolf, Lou undergoes an almost Toxie-like transformation from deadbeat cop to determined investigator. The heavy drinking persists though, and somehow acts as fuel for the super strong WolfCop. Whenever the Coroner (James Whittingham) arrives at a murder scene, he’s toting a box of donuts, and he’ll place a half-eaten pastry on a dead body. The tiny Woodhaven sheriff’s department consists of the Chief (Aidan Devine), Tina (Amy Matysio), and Lou. A Woodhaven Sheriff Officer of the Month plaque lists “Tina” repeatedly, a nice touch. A love scene between WolfCop and a vixen bartender, Jessica (Sarah Lind), set to Gowan’s “Moonlight Desires.” It’s as ironically upbeat as the sex scene from “An American Werewolf in London.”

“WolfCop” is gratuitously violent, dousing the screen with copious buckets of blood, but in embodying its comedic spirit the carnage is light-hearted rather than frightening. Lowell Dean’s ambitious project is a simultaneous homage and parody of cheesy 80’s horror flicks, and it’s deliciously self-aware. Surging through “WolfCop” is a hearty dose of adrenaline, even during less action-oriented scenes. Where “WolfCop” differs from comparable films it its honesty: it doesn’t reach for laughs, but rather fosters them through genuine creativity. Luckily, a “WolfCop 2” has already been announced, and if it’s anything like the original prepare for a riotously good time. “WolfCop” is simply a lovely, nostalgic, captivating flick, sure to leave you howling with laughter, and it’s destined as a cult classic.

For more “WolfCop” goodness, check out Evil Ebenezer and Factor’s fabulous rap, “The WolfCop.” “WolfCop” is currently available for rent or purchase across an array of streaming services including Xbox, Google Play, and Vudu. It is out on DVD, and exclusively at Best Buy on Blu Ray. The Blu Ray will be have a universal release date on May 12, 2015.