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Movies From the Black Lagoon: Howling 111: The Marsupials
Movies From the Black Lagoon
Howling 111: The Marsupials, 1987, Rated PG-13
By Tom Doty
This so called entry in the "Howling" series retains none of the original characters but manages to be a lot better than part Two (Your Sister is a Werewolf).
The action takes place in the land down under this time and juggles a lot of sub-plots with some success. First up this is the story of a young woman who breaks away from her werewolf roots to pursue an adventure in the big city. There she meets a casting director, named Donny, and gets a job on a low budget werewolf flick called "Unmasked: Part 8." She turns the tables on our casting director and seduces him into fathering her were child. They go back to her hometown of "Flow"(wow that's clever just spell it backwards) where they wish to raise their offspring in relative peace.
Secondly this is the story of a Russian ballerina who defects to Australia where she quickly blows her cover by wolfing out during rehearsal of "Swan Lake." She is briefly captured but soon escapes to join the clan at "Flow."
This is also the story of an anthropologist named Breckmeyer. He journeys to Barbie land in order to prove that werewolves exist. He is convinced that his grandfather filmed an actual ritual where Aborigines murdered a werewolf but everyone believes that the movie has been doctored (like that famous Bigfoot video of a guy in a hair shirt loping away from the camera.
The film is also about a military and papal plot to exterminate the Tasmanian Wolf. Apparently this critter was so meant that its behavior was not even recorded.
You also get a decidedly Australian flavor in what plot that finds the werewolves developing pouches like Kangaroos. These life-sustaining pouches apparently evolved to offer the young a chance to remain hidden form the hunters who prey on their mothers.
All of these plot lines converge when the military captures the werewolves of 'Flow" by stunning them with darts. Breckmeyer steps in and studies them too learn that he is in love with the ballerina. He also proves the theory that strobe lights can induce a werewolf transformation (though wolf man movie fans knew this from witnessing the disco massacre scene in Paul Naschy's magnum opus "Dr. Jekyll vs. the Werewolf).
This is actually an okay film though it's rather talky. There are lots of funny bits such as a screening of a werewolf film called "It Came From Uranus" and various scenes of momma werewolves caring or the pouch babies. The best part is the climax during which the U.S.A. sends in the "Omega Team." Turns out that the Omegas are just two guys who aren't that tough. They are kind of dumb too and learn to late that you never poke a charred werewolf on the Barbie and you absolutely never, ever fire a bazooka at a werewolf when it's right on top of you.
Unfortunately the film actually continues running for ten minutes after these events. You are thus forced to watch the characters age, breed with werewolves, and raise wolf children. By the time an age of political correctness tries to grant amnesty to the characters you'll be fast asleep. This is definitely one you can walk out on after the final fight, as the last thirteen minutes are tantamount to watching paint dry.
Best Line: "My step father tried to rape me, and he's a werewolf."
Tom Doty occasionally emerges from the Lagoon to check his e-mail and to read to children every Wednesday at 10:30am at Borders in Hagerstown. If you'd like to get a message to him, write to: email@example.com.
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