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The Howling (Special Edition) (1981)

Dee Wallace , Patrick Macnee , Joe Dante  |  R |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (191 customer reviews)

List Price: $14.98
Price: $8.76 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Blu-ray 1-Disc Version $20.34  
DVD Special Edition $8.76  

Frequently Bought Together

The Howling (Special Edition) + An American Werewolf in London (Full Moon Edition) + Stephen King's Silver Bullet
Price for all three: $20.64

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Product Details

  • Actors: Dee Wallace, Patrick Macnee, Dennis Dugan, Christopher Stone, Belinda Balaski
  • Directors: Joe Dante
  • Writers: Gary Brandner, John Sayles, Terence H. Winkless
  • Producers: Daniel H. Blatt, Jack Conrad, Michael Finnell, Rob Bottin
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC, Special Edition, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: August 26, 2003
  • Run Time: 91 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (191 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00009OWI1
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,319 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Howling (Special Edition)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • "Unleashing the Beast": all-new documentary
  • "Making a Monster Movie: Inside The Howling" featurette
  • Deleted scenes
  • Outtakes and more

Editorial Reviews

From the director of Gremlins and Piranha comes the ultimate masterpiece of primal terror. Filled with edge-of-your-seat suspense, "genuine thrills [and] amazing special effects" (Us), this riveting werewolf tale sinks its teeth into your deepest fears and never lets go! Severely traumatized by a near-fatal encounter with a serial killer, TV newscaster Karen White (Dee Wallace) takes time off at a secluded retreat called "the Colony." But when, after nights of being tormented by bestial, bloodcurdling cries, Karen ventures into the woods seeking answers, she makes a terrifying discovery. Now she must fight not only for her life but for her soul!

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
91 of 94 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
When "The Howling" appeared in theaters in 1981, it heralded a mini-revival of the werewolf movie that took advantage of advances in special effects; two films followed later that year: "Wolfen" and John Landis's beloved "An American Werewolf in London." Although "The Howling" doesn't quite match the artistry and continual popularity of Landis's film, it nonetheless has aged wonderfully and is still one of the most enjoyable horror films of its decade. It's scary without getting too gory for the average viewer, has superb special effects that don't overwhelm the story, features a fun cast of familiar faces, and has a quirky sense of humor and loads of movie in-jokes for horror movie fans.
MGM first released "The Howling" in a no-frills DVD that let the movie down: no extras, a cheap and scratchy transfer, and a very dull mono soundtrack. Thankfully, they realized the popularity of the film and are now giving us a nice edition with revamped sound (5.1 Surround), a sharp picture, and a big bowl full o' extras.
John Sayles's script (co-written with Terence H. Winkless) unapologetically drops the classic werewolf legend into the modern-day -- in this case, the world of television news and the fad of self-help psychology. News anchor Karen White (Dee Wallace-Stone), while on a special assignment to lure out a serial killer (Robert Picardo from "Star Trek: Voyager") in the city, is attacked by something bestial. On the advice of psychiatrist Dr. Waggner (Patrick Macnee), Karen and her husband (Christopher Stone) head to Waggner's clinical retreat in the woods. However, there's something very disturbing about the other patients in the colony, and those weird wolf howls at night won't stop...
The werewolf transformations supervised by Rob Bottin still have an amazing effect on viewers.
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50 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BEST HORROR MOVIE October 4, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
THE HOWLING is a rare original cult-movie, far from the reluctant werewolf pattern. The idea of werewolves instead of a single one hadn't been well developed before, as some legend variations. It has the legendary transformation scene with Rob Bottin's effects, stronger with Pino Donaggio's score (with no CD releasing yet). Rick Baker (Bottin's brother) was consultant and created later the Oscar winner effects of AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON, other historical movie.
Both movies are linked. Contemporaries, they represented a new era. There's no point discussing which one's the better. "AWIL" is more modern in a way, having non-sense humor, bloody scenes and unbelievable effects. THE HOWLING, earlier, has a classical movie profile, surprising plot and ending. Its characters were named after classical werewolf and horror movies directors, like George Waggner, Sam Newfield, R. William Neill, Erle Kenton, Lew Landers, Terry Fischer, Charlie Barton, Jerry Warren and Jack Molina. There are lots of ironies, like THE WOLF MAN quotations during the film and after credits, and the wolf cartoon in a tense scene. John Carradine, Roger Corman, John Sayles and Forrest J. Ackerman appear, giving additional charm. It's the first time more complex werewolves characters emerge, like Eddie (Robert Picardo, the scariest werewolf on movie history) and Marsha (Elisabeth Brooks, 1951-1997). Joe Dante made this classic with $1,6 million and used his own garage for the rated movies scene.
Lots of ideas were borrowed later ("the gift" in WOLF). There were sequels non-related to the original, without the "THE" of the title. Most of them have nothing to do with each other. It's depressing to someone expecting a real sequel to watch HOWLING II.
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42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wicked Cool Werewolf Movie! September 1, 2004
Format:VHS Tape
Karen White (E.T.'s Dee Wallace-Stone) is a TV news reporter who's become the object of serial killer Eddie Quist's psychotic obsession. One night, in a daring attempt to catch the killer on live television, Karen comes face to face with the beast inside him. A rookie cop comes to the rescue, and fills Eddie with lead before Karen can be physically harmed, but she's already the victim of psychological damage. Even the famous Dr. Waggner (Patrick Macnee) can't help Karen remember the face she saw that night, which has been locked away deep in her subconscious. Finally, the concerned doctor suggests that Karen and her husband, Bill, spend some time at his "Colony," a retreat in the California woods for some of his patients who need to "unwind." When the two arrive there, however, they find the place is hardly a relaxing setting. Surrounded by strangers who just keep getting stranger, disturbing howls coming from the woods at night, and a sudden rash of animal mutilations, Karen is not having a restful stay. To make matters worse, the Colony's lovely resident nymphomaniac, Marsha, has designs on Karen's frustrated husband, Bill. Meanwhile, back in the city, Karen's friends and co-workers, Chris and Terry, are doing their best to discover the secrets of Eddie Quist, who they find has mysteriously disappeared from the city morgue. Their search leads them on a path of werewolves and the supernatural, and both will have to come to terms with what they believe if they are going to save their friend from the dangers that surround her before it is too late!

Only a few months before the legendary "An American Werewolf In London" was released, Joe Dante gave us the OTHER best werewolf film ever made, the original "The Howling.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars an ole time favorite...
Good and scary! A great one! Wonderful! Packed full! just great! Intensely entertaining! A great one! Wonderful! I would recommend this one!
Published 17 days ago by Heartieone
3.0 out of 5 stars was in great condition
i bought this because i remember seeing this as a teenager! don't know why i did must have had to do with a boyfriend
the cd was in great shape, packaging awsome, arrived on... Read more
Published 24 days ago by S. A. Miller
4.0 out of 5 stars great early 80s horror movie
One of the best horror flicks of the first half of the 80s. Great mix of comedy and horror. Very cool cameos by a stellar cast of 50s and 60s horror/sci fi iconic actors, too! Read more
Published 1 month ago by super_simian_67
5.0 out of 5 stars A premier werewolf movie
Great movie and a very good transfer to blu ray, more of the same down the line please for fans
Published 2 months ago by Andrew Nihill
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent transfer! Great extras!
My favorite werewolf movie, finally on Blu Ray in the US. Looks great in HD, sounds great in 5.1. Includes deleted scenes and outtakes (some of which were not included in the US... Read more
Published 2 months ago by jborsma
5.0 out of 5 stars The Howling.
This film was one of the best ever made of werewolves. The transition in the change from man to wolf is great. Even watching it a third time was not boring.
Published 2 months ago by mgreber
5.0 out of 5 stars Cult Classic
Joe Dante's The Howling is considered by horror fans to be one of the three movies that constitute the canon of werewolf films, explores the notion that the media generates... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Hwang
5.0 out of 5 stars Scary & classic.
My boyfriend loves this movie! Scary & classic. A great edition to any monster movie collection. A real masterpiece! !
Published 4 months ago by lydia_online
4.0 out of 5 stars Howling good time!
‘The Howling’ had the misfortune of being completely overshadowed by ‘An American Werewolf in London’, which was released later in the same year, and so to this date it is largely... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Andrew Ellington
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Movie
It's the Howling what more can I say. If you have come here then you know this was one of the best werewolf movie transformations out there. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Heather
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DVD problems
I do! I wasn't sure if it was my particular player or not. I cannot play the DVD side on a Samsung Blu-ray, however the special features side plays just fine. Irritating.

I will try playing it today from a computer DVD drive. Not holding my breath, though.
Oct 27, 2010 by Francel Diaz Lenero |  See all 6 posts
Any great werewolf books out there?
"The Howling" book series. The author, Gary Brandner, only made 3 "The Howling" books though.
Oct 21, 2008 by horror1896 |  See all 4 posts
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