Director – Philippe Mora (Mad Dog Morgan, Pterodactyl Woman in Beverly Hills)
Starring – Barry Otto (Rogue, The Punisher), Imogen Annesley (Queen of the Damned, The Outsider), and Lee Biolos (Vietnam, Echoes of Paradise)
Release Date – 1987
Rating – 3.5/5
Blu Release – 3.5/5
Tagline – “The “Howling” terror continues”
My opinions on movies often catch hell from horror fans. Most refuse to let others think differently than them. When It comes to Hellraiser and Texas Chainsaw Massacre I tend to like the disliked films more than the ones that fans love. The same can be said about The Howling series. The first two films are solid but I absolutely love Howling III: The Marsupials. I first saw the movie in high school and loved it. Recently Umbrella Entertainment released the film on blu and was kind enough to send one my way. Thanks guys!
**Spoiler Alert**The film follows a young woman who is a weremarsupial that lives in the bush with several other women and her step-father who sexually abuses her. She longs for something more and leaves to Sydney where she meets an assistant director who offers her a part in Shape Shifter 8, a werewolf film is he working on. Her abusive family follows her to bring her back to her step-father. Trapped in the middle of the feuding family is an anthropologist who suspects that werewolves exist after discovering an old video of one being killed by aboriginals. His research put him in the middle of the family but soon they are all in danger when the government learns of their existence as well and sets out to eradicate them. **Spoiler Alert**
I know this sequel to the popular Howling film often gets a bum rap among horror fans. I can see why it would turn many off but I fucking love it. In fact, I do find it a little more fun than the first film. I know that is an extremely unpopular opinion but that’s just how I feel.
The acting in this one is actually pretty fucking good. I always enjoyed Barry Otto’s performance. He may not be the traditional lead but he sure delivers one hell of a performance. Imogen Annesley and Lee Biolos work perfectly together. They feed off each other’s emotions which really sells their scenes. The supporting cast is fun as well.
The story for this one is what really sold me on the film. Tasmanian tigers are something I was very interested in middle school. That whole cryptozoology thing had kicked in so I was very interested in it. Several books I had read made mention of the tigers and sighting of the creature that had been extinct since in the 1930s. Having a werewolf movie set around this was pretty fucking cool if you asked me. I also liked the love story tacked on and the various werewolf tribes. This created a huge universe that could be used for future films. With that being said, the biggest drawback to this one is that it is not a continuality of the first two films. It is a standalone film. My biggest complaint about the film is the ending. The action ends and we enter this happy phase of the film which is cool and all but it just keeps going. It could end at any time but it doesn’t. It chooses to just keep going and going with nothing new added to the story.
Finally, this one has some questionable effects mixed with some fun one. There is several scenes that always fascinated me but there was a few times where I could not figure out what they were thinking. Like the werewolf nuns with the rubber masks. They looks completely ridiculous when they tried to talk. If they would have just stayed still it would have been a cool shot and not look so cheap. Overall, Howling III: The Marsupials is a guilty pleasure of mine. I absolutely love the film and the blu release from Scream Factory is a must for any collector.
Audio Commentaries with Director Philippe Mora
COLONIAL LYCANTHROPY: A Conversation with Philippe Mora
Extended NOT QUITE HOLLYWOOD interviews with Director Philippe Mora and Special Effects Artist Bob McCarron