Trash Or Terror Tuesday: Werewolf Hunter (2004)

t’s time for #TrashOrTerrorTuesday

…when I examine a film that’s been languishing in my personal library to determine if it is #Trash or #Terror

– or more importantly, if it deserves to stay in my collection.

And so, out from the dusty shelves of #VHS tapes & DVDs comes…

DVD cover for Werewolf Hunter (2004)Werewolf Hunter / Romasanta: The Werewolf Hunt (2004) by #PacoPlaza

w/ #JulianSands #ElsaPataky

A traveling vendor seeks the affections of a woman who has lost several family members to an unknown serial killer.

“Based On A True Story”

#Werewolf #Horror


The DVD of Werewolf Hunter (2004) has been sitting on my shelf for years. Whenever I see it there, I get a vague feeling of having watched it and liked it some time in the past. Other than that, no details come to mind. So, I decided to put it to the #TrashOrTerrorTuesday test.

The first thing I noticed was that the movie is actually called  Romasanta (2004), or Romasanta: The Werewolf Hunt (2004), or  Werewolf Hunter: The Legend of Romasanta or Werewolf Hunter: Romo Santa – why does my DVD box only say Werewolf Hunter?

The next thing I noticed was that the movie stars Julian Sands, Elsa Pataky, and a bunch of other classy (dare I say, serious) actors. No scream queens, B-movie stars, or Ron Jeremy (or other porn stars) are found in this cast list. It quickly becomes apparent that the movie is a co-production between Spain and the United Kingdom.

Werewolf Hunter (2004) is not a typical werewolf movie. It’s based on the true story of serial killer Manuel Blanco Romasanta, who murdered 13 people in Spain in the 1850s and claimed that a curse caused him to turn into a wolf and kill people. The movie treads that line of “is he, or isn’t he?” We see a wolf in action,  we see transformations, we see blood and gore – but is it all in the character’s head?

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter. The story is gripping, the actors are all top notch, and the action is extremely well done. The only weird part is that I didn’t remember one second of it from a previous viewing. And there are some very memorable moments – including one where a werewolf hunter (or is he a fellow werewolf?) runs like hell through the woods stark naked, penis visibly swinging to the left and the right (to paraphrase the AC/DC song). I wouldn’t exactly call this a highlight, but it’s a fairly unique sight in mainstream movies and I think I would have remembered it.

This, and many other moments, lead me to wonder if it’s possible that I somehow DIDN’T watch this movie fifteen years ago. Could I have accidentally put it on my shelf and forgotten about it? I’ll never know for sure.

So, what’s the verdict?

Werewolf Hunter (2004) is a moderate to full blown Terror. It’s legitimately suspenseful and tense – and you really don’t know what’s going to happen from moment to moment. It has scenes of horror (and gore) that work, and manages to generate an atmosphere of horror and unease throughout. It’s also a convincing recreation of a medieval world.

The ending of Werewolf Hunter might not feel completely satisfying, as it adheres to the true story of it’s source inspiration (although many of the details have been fictionalized). I won’t say any more about it, except that I thought the ending worked. Part of what I like about it, is that it’s different from what one might come to expect from a typical werewolf movie.

Needless to say, Werewolf Hunter (2004) will be staying in my permanent collection  – at least until the next time I look at it on the shelf and say “What the hell is that?!”