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The Howling [DVD]

Patrick MacNee , Dennis Dugan , John Sayles    Suitable for 18 years and over   DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
Price: 14.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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The Howling [DVD] + The Howling II [DVD] + Howling III [DVD] (1987)
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Product details

  • Actors: Patrick MacNee, Dennis Dugan, Christopher Stone, Dee Wallace Stone, Belinda Balaski
  • Directors: John Sayles
  • Producers: Pino Donaggio, Michael Finell
  • Format: PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: 18
  • Studio: Momentum
  • DVD Release Date: 18 Oct 2004
  • Run Time: 87 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0000AZVEZ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 19,145 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



An instant werewolf classic, The Howling was directed by Joe Dante, a graduate of Roger Corman's school of low-budget ingenuity who had gained enough momentum with 1978's Piranha to rise to this bigger challenge. He brought along Piranha screenwriter John Sayles, too, and recruited makeup wizard Rob Bottin to create what was then the wildest on-screen transformation ever seen. With Gary Brandner's novel The Howling as a starting point, Sayles and Dante conceived a werewolf colony on the California coast, posing as a self-help haven led by a seemingly benevolent doctor (Patrick Macnee), and populated by a variety of "patients", from sexy, leather-clad sirens (Elisabeth Brooks) to an old coot (John Carradine) who's quite literally long in the tooth. When a TV reporter (Dee Wallace) arrives at the colony to recover from a recent trauma, the resident lycanthropes prepare for a howlin' good time.

Dante handles it all with equal measures of humour, sex, gore, and horror, pulling out all the stops when the ravenous Eddie (Dante favourite Robert Picardo, later known as The Doctor on Star Trek: Voyager) transforms into a towering , bloodthirsty werewolf. (Bottin's mentor Rick Baker would soon raise the make-up ante with An American Werewolf in London.) As usual in Dante's movies (qv. Gremlins), in-jokes abound, from characters named after werewolf movie directors, amusing cameos (Corman, Sayles, Forrest J Ackerman), and hammy inserts of wolfish cartoons and Allen Ginsberg's "Howl". It's best appreciated now as a quintessential example of early-80s horror, with low-budget limitations evident throughout, but The Howling remains a giddy genre milestone. --Jeff Shannon,

Product Description

A female TV reporter (Dee Wallace) goes to an out-of-town retreat in order to recover from a traumatic encounter with a serial killer. Unfortunately, her attempt to get some rest and relaxation is ruined by the fact that her fellow inmates are all werewolves. Joe Dante's horror-spoof brilliantly combines chills and laughs with amazing special effects and movie-buff references. Watch out for cameo appearances from B-movie maestro Roger Corman and director John Sayles (who co-scripted the film).

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Werewolf Movie! 13 Feb 2011
The Howling is a werewolf film that is a little different to your average horror -- which is probably why it has endured so long. Karen White (Dee Wallace -- who every bloke went bananas over, in the day, though I thought Belinda Balaski (who plays her friend Terri) was far more "appealing" in this respect!) is a TV reporter who (whilst going undercover to try and expose a serial killer who is stalking her) survives a werewolf encounter. Because of the shock, she is invited (by her therapist -- a Christopher-Lee-like Patrick Macnnee) to recuperate at "the colony" (a spooky, woodland reserve by the seaside) where -- as you might guess -- when the moon comes out, all is not as it seems.

The acting (as was the case for the subsequent year's big werewolf film, An American Werewolf in London) is much better than you would expect in a "creature feature" and the main characters are all convincing. The atmosphere of the colony is great -- think misty trees, wood cabins and sixties (Lost-style) university buildings. Of course, any werewolf film also lives or dies on the beast itself and in this respect, The Howling is a somewhat mixed bag. It seems that the budget was saved for the later stages of the film, as before then (due to some truly awful -- at one point animated! -- effects) I was thinking this was a 2 or at most a 3 star film (nothing more than a well acted B movie, with men in hairy suits; I was wondering how I could have remembered this so fondly!). Throughout, though, there is an razor-sharp tension, that builds and builds and then suddenly erupts into the horror you were expecting from a film of this standing. When the beast emerges fully, you are left suitably terrified to realise what the fuss was all about! (Far more so than with any modern CGI Werewolf!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Howler of a movie! 18 Nov 2008
By GratuitousViolets TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
TV reporter Karen White (Scream Queen Dee Wallace!) becomes traumatised after investigative reporting leads her to a meeting in a dark room with a serial killer she knows only as "Eddie". Following their encounter (and his death thanks to the police), Karen is so traumatised she can neither remember what happened, or what she saw.

At the suggestion of a Psychiatrist (Patrick Macnee, she and her husband Bill are sent to the Colony, an experimental rural rehabilitation centre, where they meet the unusual locals such as the dark leather clad predatory Marsha and her strange animal-like brother.

Karen starts to hear howling at night, and is concerned things are not what they seem at the Colony.

Meanwhile her colleagues from work are investigating the serial killer case which leads them into more dangerous territory - werewolves!

With some spectacular special effects very cutting edge for it's time (it uses some of the technology similar to what was used in American Werewolf in London which was also released the same year as this movie) and an interesting storyline, this has survived through the ages despite it's outdated hairstyles and clothes. Definately a keeper you can watch again and again.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nail bitingly Scary and awesome tension! 30 Oct 2012
I've never thought any werewolf movie would top the brilliance of an american werewolf in London, but this one did the job ... this is not only the best werewolf movie I've seen, its also one of the finest and most intellegent and well made horror movies I've seen, its up there with some of the best horror movies out there. Unlike other horror films the Howling offers you a scary tension that'll raise the fear level high, I've only seen a few horror films that are scary in tension this is one of them. it has a few mild laughs but some of the stuff in the film is chilling and very fun to wacthl its well though up storyline and great cast who are worthy with their acting skills, there is never a dull momment always something happening and everything is shockingly unexpected, its unpredictable and the werewolves look absolutly well polished.... unmissible watch this movie its fantastic!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pulsepounding Fun At Its Very Best! 4 Mar 2008
For as long as I've watched movies, my own personal yearning has seen me lean more towards the horror genre.

At least with a horror movie, more often than not, you will be guaranteed some form of entertainment.

Such is a case in point with this superlative lycanthropic tale based upon the best seller by Gary Brandner and co written by the kings of low budget cinema, John Sayles and Terence Winkless.

I say co-written, but as has become apparent, the script submitted by Winkless lack shall we say, that certain bite, and Sayles being the more literate of the two was drafted in to give the movie a complete transformation.

Of course being in the hands of first time director at that time, Joe Dante, would become the beloved cult classic that we know and love today.

However all things being equal, this movie's lack of success was more or less down to the much bigger hyped other lycanthrope movie being unleashed at the same time, and that movie being of course John Landis's 'An American Werewolf In London' Can we ever compare the two, perhaps not, perhaps maybe my personal choice of the two, would have me leaning towards Joe Dante's directorial debut.

I've always held a deep affection for the low budget B movie, sure enough I watched quite a few in my time, and to be truthful I have been left jaded by many.

However, the spirit that pervades this movie has carried it through the decades, and indeed this movie like so many that have since gone on to spawn a franchise has perhaps had it's reputation somewhat dragged through the mud, but this movie for me represents pure pulse pounding fun at its very best!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
good movie
Published 5 days ago by Jamie Edwards
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
very good
Published 25 days ago by christine
4.0 out of 5 stars Fly me to the moon
Dee Wallace and Patrick Macnee star in this genre classic about a news reporter who is drawn into a lupine world after being stalked by a hairy killer. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Scaroth, Last of the Jagaroth
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Horror With Bite
Dvd Info.
Running Time 87 minutes approx, Region 2.

1)Low budget filmmaker Roger Corman cameos as the man waiting to use the telephone booth after... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Timelord007
5.0 out of 5 stars my kind of horror
i watched this film years ago and then bought it on video, i had to have the dvd as a backup in case the video goes wonky, love it.
Published 8 months ago by priscilla cairns
4.0 out of 5 stars Great classic
Gary Brandner wrote this along with two others, the books are fantastic and are all connected, the films aren't and as such, in my humble opinion, apart from this one are total... Read more
Published 10 months ago by By-tor
3.0 out of 5 stars Typical
Special effects of its era really date this one, that's not always a bad thing either. I didn't realise were wolfs could be such perverts at the cinema, young lass in black leather... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Mr. D. Barry
3.0 out of 5 stars I should have watched this sooner
This may be an odd comparison, but I couldn't help think about The Godfather when I was watching The Howling. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Albatross
3.0 out of 5 stars not bad
the werewolf effects in this film, are quite good for the day. the storyline is not too bad. a reporter goes' into a porn shop, were she is supposed to meet a killer. Read more
Published 13 months ago by indian osceola
4.0 out of 5 stars The Howling comes to the UK.... almost...
I find it odd that feel able to offer UK customers the Region A-locked US version of Joe Dante's classic werewolf movie on import but don't have enough joined-up... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Mh Deitch
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