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485 Ratings

The Howling

Directed by Joe Dante
United States, 1981
Horror, Thriller


After a bizarre and near fatal encounter with a serial killer, a newswoman is sent to a rehabilitation center whose inhabitants may not be what they seem.

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The Howling Directed by Joe Dante

What are people saying?

  • filmcapsule's rating of the film The Howling

    Probably Dante's darkest film, and an interesting take on lycanthrophy as sexual aggression and predation. These werewolves aren't just feral beasts, they're lusty, even sadistic, emphasizing the hell the protagonist lives through as a struggling survivor of a sexual crime. A far cry from the lighthearted mischief of Gremlins indeed.

  • Ethan's rating of the film The Howling

    One of the best werewolf movies ever made, up there with An American Werewolf in London, with a lot of tongue in cheek humor and gore mixed in for a good time.

  • House 0f Leaves's rating of the film The Howling

    An effective horror film and social satire. One of the best of the genre, alongside American Werewolf, and with that film contains the best transformation sequences ever captured on film.

  • Matthew_Lucas's rating of the film The Howling

    A local news reporter tries to help police capture a serial killer, and accidentally stumbles upon a wellness retreat full of werewolves in Joe Dante's genre classic. The special effects are pretty strong for the time, especially considering the film's low budget, but its characters aren't particularly interesting. Dante directed much stronger films (GREMLINS, PIRANHA), but this one spawned numerous sequels.

  • SeemsLikeFun's rating of the film The Howling

    Would give it a 2.5 if possible. Starts out well and ends well, but most of the time spent in the resort feels undercooked and bland. The way they split between Karen's story and Terri/Chris hurts both plots, I especially felt like we should've gotten more of Terri and Chris who were much more fun to watch. The transformation scenes are good, though.

  • Bob's rating of the film The Howling

    Somewhere between ambitious practical effects and interesting ideas of human's repressed drives, there is a blank space where the story was supposed to be. The reason for that are bland characters that are used as an excuse for excessive transformation scenes that usually try to grab more than they can handle. In spite of that, werewolves were never more horrendous than this, thus making it a proper werewolf flick.

  • Michael Peer's rating of the film The Howling

    Joe Dante's The Howling is an effective but forgettable genre movie that has more bark than bite. The creature FX are stellar given the time, but there is something deeply missing here. The characters never come to life and the subject matter isn't nearly as captivating as the filmmakers think it is. I was hoping for a film that would be much more fun with more character. A stepping stone that would lead to Gremlins.

  • Fabiha's rating of the film The Howling

    "Repression. Repression is the father of neurosis, of self-hatred. Now, stress results when we fight against our impulses. We've all heard people talk about animal magnetism, the natural man. the noble savage - as if we'd lost something valuable in our long evolution into civilized human beings."