August 10, 2018 Another WolfCop (Movie Review)
Written and directed by Lowell Dean (13 Eerie 2013, Opie’s Home series), Another WolfCop is the Horror Comedy follow-up to his 2014’s fan-favorite WolfCop. Initially shown at festivals in 2017, thanks to RLJE Films, Another WolfCop found its way to DVD, Blu-ray, and Digital Video on July 3, 2018. Starring Leo Fafard (I Heart Regina 2010, WolfCop 2014) and Yannick Bisson (Murdoch Mysteries series, Year By The Sea 2016), this is a Horror Comedy sequel unlike any other…
Following one alcoholic lupine policeman as he tries to bust up the machinations of a new, eccentric businessman in town, Another WolfCop is the latest in a line of films that can now be accurately called an entire subgenre of the horror experience – the overly ridiculous Horror Comedy mashup. There are a few distinctive elements of this subgenre that should be easily identifiable to just about anybody – the practical effects are over the top, the premise is absurd, and the dialogue is constantly winking at the audience.
Most importantly though, is the marriage of straight-man deadpan humor with shocking and explosive content – a good Horror Comedy film tends to take its world seriously even as it absolutely lampoons that world. It emphasizes the physical absurdity of Horror films with an even almost straight-laced sensibility. As though it were saying to the audience, “Yes, this is happening, this is what you are watching, you better get used to it.” As with all films, these types are much stronger when they lean into that and accept themselves for what they are, and Another WolfCop certainly succeeds on that front.
Or, to put it another way, Another WolfCop succeeds because it has an extremely vivid sense of its own identity. It is not high-minded or afraid to go somewhere – it knows its audience. It knows it is here for an orgy of ridiculous blood and guts, and it knows that while it is pushing the envelope for all material it may as well push the envelope sexually too; happily tossing in a running joke about a monster penis that other films might have blushed at.
Of course, it is no surprise that Another WolfCop shows this level of confidence. It is, after all, a sequel to the original WolfCop, which got widely praised for being a truly ridiculous example of Horror Comedy. In fact, it is the elements of the original WolfCop that slowed down the gags to focus on story that got the most criticism, and the creative team has wisely learned from this. This film is tighter, meaner, and leaner than the first. In fact, critics could call it a lot of things, but boring would hardly be one of them.
The effects work is really the stand-out here, and it needs to be. It is all practical rather than CGI, and anybody should be able to quickly tell. There are already thousands of online pieces waxing poetic about the benefits of physical effects over digital effects, but there is no denying that it lends a certain immediacy to a film like this that is plainly necessary when you are dealing with this sort of material. Interestingly, physical effect work also gives a film like this something of a meta-narrative – a direct link between not just the audience and the characters, but the audience and the filmmakers.
Another WolfCop is a silly film, but it is a very hands-on film – not sleek and polished like a Hollywood blockbuster. If the audience were not able to see that the creative team were just as hands on, crafting prosthetics and throwing buckets of blood, then some of the film’s thrill would be gone. In a way, practical effect work can act as something of a challenge from the audience to the filmmaker – can you pull this off, can you make it look good, can you make it make sense? If the answer is yes, as it is here, then said filmmaker might just have a winner on their hands.
All this in mind, little has been mentioned about the performances, but they do a better job than necessary. As said before, in many ways, it is Another WolfCop’s tone and practical effects that are the real star, but the actors are committed and turn their performances up to 11. It makes an unbelievable tale that much more believable. For all these reasons, CrypticRock gives Another WolfCop 4 out of 5 stars.