Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Series Killers: Howling 2- Your Sister is A Werewolf

Joe Dante made a masterpiece in the form of The Howling.  Naturally, someone had to come along and screw that up with at least five sequels.  Two of those films come from Philippe Mora, the man behind Communion and Snide & Prejudice.  Having already talked about Howling III, let's back-track to his first effort.  The film feels like a movie that he was forced to make in order to get his real pet project done.  Having sat through that nearly two-hour, piece of shit, I can ask this: was it worth it?  This movie is notable for having two actors you only see together here: Christopher Lee and Reb Brown.  That's a match made in Heaven...right.  Reb was just coming into his own and it would be just one year before he would appear in the cult classic Space Mutiny.  Yes, I proudly-own that film on DVD.  Lee, however, was in a different place.  Coming out of the '70s, he struggled to find an identity as a Character Actor in Genre Films.  This is a case of what happens when he would agree to do shit.  To learn more, read on.  Get out your titanium collection for my review of...
The film begins in space as Christopher Lee appears to talk about...well, nothing.  Good start, Movie.  After the credits, we cut to the funeral of the reporter from The Howling.  They want to connect the two films, despite eliminating the word 'The' from the title.  Don't worry- it found a new home in 'Los Angeles- City of THE Angels.'  At the funeral, we see Lee again, apparently having returned from outer space.  He leaves, but one of the lady's co-workers follows him, but the brother (Reb Brown) doesn't approve.  Since he has no spine, however, he goes with her to see the man.  A mere seven minutes in, we get the film's title line, delivered with profound conviction by Lee.  A couple things of note happen in this scene..  First, we learn about the villains- a pair of Werewolves really interested in the 'dead' reporter.  Second, we see a recreation of the video of when the girl turned into a Werewolf.  Hey, remember how that was happening live in the last Film?  Lastly, Lee explains that these Werewolves are too powerful for silver to work on them.  What does work, you ask?  Titanium.  Why?  They never say.  Aargh- I hate this lack of logic!
The trio go to the tomb of the sister, only to find themselves under assault by Werewolves.  Thankfully, Reb is here to do what he does best: yell and shoot.  Want to kill any fear in your horror film?  Have Reb Brown mow them all down with a rifle, exerting almost no effort.  The point of this is to prove to the pair that Werewolves are real and to send the film to Transylvania.  Naturally, a French-born Australian man would take a film from Los Angeles to Transylvania.  Wait, what?  In the area, the Werewolf pair have arrived to awaken the power of the evil Stirba- aka the original subtitle to the film- who is played by Sybil Danning.  The silly plot brings in a ceremony involving flashy effects, but no substance.  Now in her young, hot form, Stirba plans for a big ceremony involving some bullshit I don't care about.  Once in Transylvania, the trio run afoul of some devious villagers, but dispatch with them easily.  In town, they meet up with the group of men who work for Lee's character, including a Priest and a Midget.  What- no Rabbi?  Instead, we get to watch Stirba's henchman engage in freaky, Werewolf humping on a bed, while the she-wolf...she-watches.  Eventually, she joins in before the film cuts away.  By the way, Sybil as a Werewolf- not hot.  Sybil as anything else- hot.
I won't lie to you- this movie gets really damn dumb.  Sometime in the middle of the film, Reb and the girl hook-up, which is all just to set up the girl being used as bait.  They keep her around for a bit before Reb finds them...and runs away.  Sadly, the midget gets killed, despite his awesome flail skills.  The group set-up for a final assault on the castle, with Reb settling for a gun...since knifes are too silly for him.  Stirba sends out all of her pack, who are fresh off a punk band playing the same song for the 400th time now, but they all die.  Seriously, these wolves suck!  Eventually, we get three people left to battle the villains: the priest, Lee and Brown.  The priest confronts Stirba, but he's dispatched by a demon-thing on her staff.  By the way, the film is too cheap for stop-motion, so it's just a bad puppet effect.  Reb shows up in time to kill both Werewolves in easy fashion, making their point in this movie what exactly?  Finally, Lee confronts Sybil and she...shoots light beams at him while wearing an outfit made out of random pieces of armor.  He stabs her with the Titanium knife, but she manages to light him on fire with the spell.  Evidently, the pair are brother and sister, a plot point that comes up in the last ten minutes.  One silly prologue later and the movie ends in an abrupt manner.
This movie sucks...even if my sister is a Werewolf.  The thing is just dumb- plain and simple.  The plot has promise, but just sort of flounders about.  Stirba does nothing major, other than wait around in her castle and engage in some freaky shit.  I should note that her topless scene is shown about ten more times during the ending credits.  Yeah, the end credits are a music video...for the film you just saw...and with the same stupid song again!  Damn you for making me sit through the credits!  The acting is not all that terrible here, but some of it is very out of place.  Reb Brown is here to be big and beefy, while Lee is here to make the film seem credible.  Yeah, it doesn't work.  His appearance here is just embarrassing- plain and simple.  I like to believe that the rumor about him apologize for being in this movie when he met Joe Dante on the set of Gremlins 2 is right.  In fact, let me get this out of the way.  If you ever read this, Joe- I'm sorry for watching Howling 2.  It's a stupid piece of shit that tarnishes the legacy of your great film.  Speaking of which, there are still about four more sequels for me to review.  God dammit!  On the plus side, boobs.
Up next, I take a look at a film that proves that space and horror don't mix.  This fourth film in a series that would eventually go solely to cable is straight out of Hell itself!  Stay tuned...

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