Full Moon High

Wicked Wednesday: Full Moon High (1981)

Happy 2023! Always a shock to the system when you realise you’re already this many days into the new year and have done nothing, let alone attempted to make yourself “better” in any way.

Let me tell you, the brain has been like sludge. After a long visit back to the States over Christmas, I have lost most of my ambition of watching movies. And most of them that I have seen are comedies and not horror. My heart isn’t in it!

But I knew it was time to get my ass in gear and start writing again. If watching comedy felt easier than horror, why not try a horror comedy. The comedy should make the pill easier to swallow, right?

Well. Let’s just say that wasn’t the case. Comedy must be one of the most difficult genres to write. What one person finds funny might be really unfunny to someone else. Unfortunately for me, Full Moon High was 0% funny to me, but instead it felt like a painful journey that just wouldn’t end.

This 80s horror comedy was written and directed by the iconic Larry Cohen. This is a funny guy. I’m really not sure why this one didn’t work for me.

In the 1950s (or what only half-heartedly attempts to be the 50s), football star Tony Walker is dragged to Romania by his father. This isn’t Tony’s idea of a great time, especially as the trip means that he will miss the Big Game. While his dad has a great time with his lady friends, Tony is forced to wander Romania by himself.

One night, Tony is dining alone when a woman offers to read his palm. She tells him that he will live forever and has the pentagram, a sign of the werewolf, on him. He gets lost on his way back home when he is attacked by a werewolf and becomes one himself.

Tony is now cursed to live forever in his high school body. After his dad’s accidental death back in America, Tony decides to leave Full Moon. He travels the world on his own for decades, terrorising people wherever he does.

When he returns to Full Moon High in the 80s, he finds it in much worse shape than before. The football team, for one, is atrocious. He quickly gains the attention of three women: his former high school sweetheart, his teacher and the class hottie. (Though the classmate and teacher looked so similar, I thought they were the same character for most of this movie…)

Tony believes that his only way of breaking his curse is by scoring a touchdown in the Big Game. Unfortunately for him, Full Moon High’s football team stinks. He still gets the touchdown, is shot, lives, and remains a werewolf.

There’s more to it like a transformation video he makes with his classmate that everyone thinks is a porno. Umm…a hijacking? I don’t know. It tires me out just thinking about it all again.

Thankfully, lead actor Adam Arkin is pretty good in this. He’s charismatic enough to help you understand why everyone is so attracted to him. His father even makes an appearance as a psychiatrist. I would have enjoyed Alan’s part more if I understood why the hell he was there.

I really wish the movie had done more in the way of plot or even scene setting. Make the 50s BIG. Make Tony’s adjustment to the changing world more apparent. Write some plot! I don’t know! Anything! Help!

Full Moon High didn’t get one single laugh from me. But I think even if it does manage to make you laugh, there isn’t much here that will be worth remembering the next day.