Beasts: What Big Eyes

Nigel Kneale reworks some of his original Quatermass body horror for this truly bizarre take on the werewolf legend, updated to 1976 Britain. Michael Kitchen is the keen RSPCA officer, complete withy uniform, who is on the track of imports of wolves; he traces them to an anonymous-looking pet-shop, but one glance at the owner, the perennially lupine Patrick McGee, suggests that the creatures have been used for experimentation, and McGee is the result. What Big Eyes has a typically wordy Kneale script, which includes an eye opening discussion of the story of Red Riding Hood, and a fascinating description of how the werewolf myth might be derived from reality. What Big Eyes has a slight, but telling pay-off, and it’s a slow-burn story that make up for in originality what it lacks in scares. If nothing else, it shows off Kneale’s gift for reworking classic horror tropes into everyday British life.

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