Bad Moon

Bad Moon is very efficiently and amusingly laid out. The werewolf returns home to his sister, is sniffed out by her dog. The dog is thought to have killed a man actually done in by the werewolf, is taken away and then freed in time to save its mistress.

The three-prong approach adds a con artist who tries to provoke the dog into attacking him, so as to sue for damages. The sister is a lawyer and sends him packing.

Mariel Hemingway’s performance is equal to all this. Michael Paré’s last transformation is particularly fine as it is seen only halfway, with transitional teeth and a sanguine, leering face. Mason Gamble as Hemingway’s young son is a game lad, climbing out his second-story window and over a high fence to rescue the dog.

Overproduction tends to blur the clear lines somewhat, but after the climactic battle the bloodied werewolf restored to its human state is caught out in the woods by the brave canine, and the sight of Paré at this moment is a reminder that effects in the cinema cannot ultimately be produced by a studio department.