Sunday, March 22, 2009

Review: Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf

Starring Christopher Lee (sadface), Reb Brown and Sybil Danning.


So, take The Howling, which is in my mind tied for best werewolf movie ever made alongside An American Werewolf in London. It was a classic. This sequel is, apparently, the best way to respect it they can think of.

Apparently, our story truly begins when author Gary Brandner went to see his novel, The Howling, adapted to film. He was very bitter, because the film strayed from his book so much (it was better, by a lot, though the book was enjoyable). The names were different, the werewolves stood upright, and there was NO anal sex! OUTRAGE!!!! How dare they bastardize his literary masterpiece? So, Gary Brandner vowed that he would win the option to write the sequel, and he did.

On that note, let's talk Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf. First of all, you already know the film won't be astounding, so we don't have to tiptoe around that. Then there's the fact that the film is trying to insult you before you even pick it up. What do you say to that? "Nuh-uh, YOUR sister is a werewolf." Then again, it is descriptive.

We open the film with the funeral for Karen White (the protagonist of The Howling), and meet her brother Ben. Ben is approached by a creepy old man, Stefan Crosscoe (Christopher Lee, and even he couldn't save this movie) who informs Ben that his sister is a werewolf. Here, we pinpoint the exact moment where this film stops having anything to do with it's predecessor.

There's an interlude with a horrible '80's band whose 1 songs seems to make up the entirety of the soundtrack. We see a "vicious killing" that at least lets us down easy and lets us know there's no need to wait for the special effects to show up. See, the only time we see an actual werewolf is when they play the same shot of a werewolf mask against a black screen, over and over again.

We follow Crosscoe, Ben and Jenny Templeton (a love interest, because Lee just wouldn't cut it) to Transylvania (......) where the "action" heats up. Crosscoe seems a Van Helsing of sorts, ready to do battle with Stirba, queen of the werewolves. Stirba, the Werewolf Bitch (this is, by the way, the film's alternative title) is played by the once luscious Sybil Danning. We reach the point of the movie when Stirba strips out of her bondage gear for no apparent reason in her first scene. We move through a movie with neither werewolves, nor special effects (minus the werewolf threesome with three actors covered in fake fur. All "hairy situation" jokes are lost by the vomit that tries to force its way out of your mouth). Then, Stirba is finally laid to rest, and when we finally think we've reached the sweet, sweet bliss of the credits, we are treated to a montage of the movie's best moments. Played over that same fucking song.

Stirba's booby scene is played over six times during this montage, and apparently watching this in theaters made star Sybil Danning cry. Can't say as I blame her.


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