Sunday, 7 April 2013

The Howling (1981)

"The Howling" (1981, Daniel H. Blatt, Joe Dante) is a werewolf movie.

Karen White (scream queen Dee Wallace) is a news anchor-woman on the hunt for a brutal serial killer. When she finally has him cornered, something scary happens and she is left traumatised. The killer is shot dead.

She attends a retreat known as 'The Colony', prescribed to her by her Doctor, Dr. Waggner (Patrick Macnee). The retreat is strange and full of questionable people, including some familiar horror faces. Soon, Karen begins to suspect that something sinister is going on at the Colony, but then again she could just be crazy...

A very slow start marred this film for me somewhat, but the effects and costumes are really excellent (which isn't surprising, considering Mr. Bottin later went on to make all those wonderful nasties for 'The Thing'). 

 The pace is also picked back up at the end.

It's certainly no replacement for 'American Werewolf in London' (made in the same year) as far as werewolf transformation scenes go, but it admittedly had a much smaller budget. With quite a bit of wolfing-out and some really eerie werewolf hands grasping out from dark corners, I'd rate this as one of the best werewolf films out there even today.

Fun and daft, I'm sure a lot of people watch this film just for Elisabeth Brooks' nude scene! But it's really worth a try if you're in the mood for some good, old-fashioned man-eating-lycanthropes.