The Howling (1981)

One of the two excellent werewolf movies from 1981 (the other being, of course, “An American Werewolf in London”), Joe Dante’s “The Howling” is not everyone’s cup of tea, but I’ve always had an affinity for it. Dee Wallace is terrific in the lead, and Dante has the foresight to surround her with effective character actors (including Patrick Macnee and Kevin McCarthy), all of which gives the movie a certain prestige. The pace is slow and deliberate, which is a nice, classy touch that make the movie’s increasingly tense atmosphere all the more effective. The climax is absolutely extraordinary, all leading to an infamous finale that still holds up. Like I said, it’s fairly polarizing as a horror classic thanks its languid pace, but I think it’s a sleepily effective little number.

Rating: ★★★★ (out of 5)

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