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Howling Trilogy: The Marsupials/The Rebirth/The Freaks [DVD]

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Overview

Synopsis

The Howling VI: The Freaks
Part of a pointless string of sequels ostensibly based on the werewolf novels by Gary Brandner, this entry deserves credit for taking the creatively dead series in an interesting new direction. Set in the barren rural town of Canton Bluff, the story centers on the enigmatic figure of Ian (Brendan Hughes), a likable but severely solitary drifter who takes a job making repairs to the local church. Eschewing human contact, Ian seems unnaturally leery of the impending full moon, a fear shared by a man named Harker (Bruce Payne), the owner of a sleazy traveling carnival. Aware that Ian is a genuine werewolf, Harker is able to blackmail the young man into working for his carnival, where he is put on display with other human oddities. To further complicate matters, Harker is revealed to have a monstrous secret of his own -- he's a vampire, who sees Ian's condition as a cover for preying on the blood of local folk. In a nod to Tod Browning's Freaks, Ian joins forces with the other carnival freaks to destroy their evil master. Director Hope Perello's taut, suspenseful debut makes clever references to classic horror films without lapsing into parody or imitation, and the production has a classy look and feel, helping to shrug off the unpleasant stigma normally associated with the otherwise mediocre Howling franchise. ~ Cavett Binion, Rovi

Howling III: The Marsupials
Professor Harry Beckmeyer (Barry Otto) goes searching for a rare breed of werewolf/marsupial in this satirical horror comedy. With his sidekick, Professor Sharpe (Ralph Cotterill), they find Jerboa (Imogen Annesley), and take her to Sydney to appear in a small role in a horror film. Soon members of her tribe disguised as nuns try and rescue the she-werewolf. Olga Gorki (Dasha Blahova) changes into a lupine monster as she pirouettes on the stage of the Sydney Opera House. The feature works as a parody of its two predecessors. ~ Dan Pavlides, Rovi

Howling V: The Rebirth
Basically another variation of Ten Little Indians with a werewolf thrown in for good measure, this plodding sequel refers less to previous Howling installments than to the source novels by Gary Brandner. The stage is set at an ominous Romanian castle, where the ancestors of a legendary werewolf bloodline committed suicide in the 15th century to rid the world of their monstrous kind. Apparently they did not entirely succeed, since 500 years later a diverse group of guests is invited to the castle by its resident count (Philip Davis), who plans to reveal the identity of a lycanthrope in their midst: the descendant of the one werewolf who got away. Filmed on location in Budapest, this film benefits from its ominous Gothic setting and an interesting score, but there is little else to recommend it; the mystery monster is onscreen for barely more than five minutes, making one wonder whether the film was originally intended to be a Howling sequel at all. ~ Cavett Binion, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Image coming soon
    Brendan Hughes - Ian
  • Bruce Payne
    Bruce Payne - Harker
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    Michele Matheson - Elizabeth
  • Image coming soon
    Sean Gregory Sullivan - Winston
  • Carol Lynley
    Carol Lynley - Miss Eddington
Product images, including color, may differ from actual product appearance.