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The Howl is a true surrealist cult classic, filled with eye-shattering imagery, visual jokes, impossible characters, riotous comedy, and punk rock music well before its time. A young bride escapes her wedding ceremony with a stranger and together they set off on an epic journey though increasingly bizarre lands. They encounter talking animals and mournful exhibitionists, converse with a discoursing rock, journey through a surrealist's psychedelic hotel, instigate a prison riot, escape from naked cannibals living in a tree and battle a wind-up midget dictator! Featuring the legendary Tina Aumont (Casanova) as the bride and Italy's great clown Luigi Proietti as her make-shift partner, The Howl challenges authority and convention in the true anarchist spirit of the 1960s.
Famous for his later erotica, Tinto Brass presents here one of the greatest works of the era - along with A Clock Work Orange, a film he was asked to direct, but instead made The Howl; one of the strangest films ever! Cult Epics presents the rare, original version of The Howl, taken directly from Tinto Brass' personal print.
Italian language with optional English subtitles.
- Widescreen Version (16X9 Enhanced)
- Newly Restored, Uncensored Director's Cut
- Exclusive English Audio Commentary By Tinto Brass
- Lobby Card Gallery
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Top Customer Reviews
After seeing "The Howl," I am glad that "A Clockwork Orange" ultimately ended up in Kubrick's hands instead of Brass', but I can see the potential here. At this stage in his career, Brass was not the bottom-loving director he would become with films like Cheeky! and Frivolous Lola, but was instead an avant-garde and surrealistic filmmaker who used his camera like an impressionist's brush. It hardly seems to be the same Tinto Brass at all.
Inspired by Edvard Munch's painting "Skriket" ("The Scream") and Alan Ginsberg's poem "Howl," "The Howl" is more of an interlocked collection of scenes and imagery rather than a film with a story. This is pure psychedelic psychosis, with symbolic characters and enough random acts of weirdness to make the most devout fan of cult cinema happy. The rough story has Anita (Tina Aumont, Salon Kitty) as a bride who leaves her fiancé Berto (Nino Segurini) at the alter (where the wedding was being presided over by a priest with a shrunken head necklace) to run off with Coso (meaning "Whatshisname," and played by popular comic actor Gigi Proietti). The two make their getaway in a double-decker English bus, and encounter such strangeness as a cannibal philosopher in a loincloth and periwig, a wind-up midget wearing a Napoleon costume and a Hitler mustache, and a lion who chastises them for disturbing the restful peace of a cemetery.
If the above description makes you want to see "The Howl," then you are the target audience. This is a film for those who don't mind wave after wave of weirdness, and who think Alejandro Jodorowsky (El Topo) was a master filmmaker. The imagery here is as bizarre as it is beautiful, and Brass makes the most of Tina Aumont's stunning looks. Filmed "on location in Rome, Naples, Berlin, Paris and on a nudists' island, "The Howl" is a non-stop surrealistic journey that must be experienced rather than described.
Cult Epic's release of "The Howl" is a bit damaged, but was created from the best print of the film available. Extensive restoration costs lost of money, and on a film this obscure we just have to be happy that it is available at all.
One warning: the reason for "The Howl"'s banning was not due to the sexuality you would expect from a Tinto Brass film, but for reasons of violence and animal cruelty. Both a mouse and a goose are killed onscreen for "The Howl," and people who are sensitive towards animal rights should probably stay away.
From his commentary, this was a film that was supposed to capture the feeling of 1968. Anita (Tina Aumont) is about to be married, but feels "It's a trap" llife is a trap, government is a trap, society is a trap. She runs away and shows us different aspects of life, freedom, and prisons. There are black and white flashbacks to Mussolini and WWII. Many of the random sounding lines were from Chinese poetry. Tinto had a number of memory lapses and failed to comment on a lot of scenes, or simply let us know he can't remember why he used a clown. (Which was actually a juxtaposition to the world's greatest cannibal philosopher, who had nude tree dweller followers...I am sure that meant something.)
The bottom line to the film was the world is a model prison...deal with it. Marriage= death and sex with your husband is like rape were some of the symbols. ummm. Thanks for all the naked ladies. The 2009 cult epics release includes the under the desk view of the nude (bottomless) teacher, which is normally cut.
F-word, sex, nudity (male/female FF)
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