The Howling Reborn arrived on Blu-ray and DVD this week. The reboot was directed by Joe Nimizki and stars Lindsey Shaw (Pretty Little Liars), Landon Liboiron (Altitude, Terra Nova) and Ivana Milicevic (Casino Royale, Running Scared). I had the chance to watch this rebirth of the classic werewolf franchise and wish I had re-watched the original!
On the eve of his high school graduation, unremarkable Will Kidman finally bonds with the girl he has long yearned for, reclusive Eliana Wynter. But he also discovers a dark secret from his past... that he is about to become a werewolf. Now, in an effort to fight destiny and save their love as well as their lives, they must battle not only Will's growing blood lust but an army of fearsome beasts bent on killing them... and then, us all.
This is one franchise reboot where fans of the original will have nothing to grasp onto aside from the addition of werewolves. This film has the feel of Twilight with it's teen angst, but has very little heart. There is a wolf pack of teens that basically took the look of the the coven of vampires from Lost Boys and re-imagined them for this film. The werewolves may look better in this film (when we see them in full), but that is about it. One good element for this film is that the werewolves are similar to those in the original classic, they walk on their hind legs instead of all fours and have elongated snouts.
Usually when I watch a horror film I want to be scared and I would like to see a decent amount of blood. The Howling Reborn. The Howling was a film that I even like better than An American Werewolf in London. The Howling Reborn is a perfect film to watch on video, and I understand why it did not receive a theatrical release. The visual effects are on par with what you would expect for a film of this caliber. I think that the cast is relatively good, Liboiron is solid in this, but nowhere as good as his role in Terra Nova.
Be prepared to throw reality out of the window and with Howling Reborn that is a requirement from the first frame. The story ranges from the absurd to completely ridiculous. The plot is not only disjointed, but there are so many scenes that do not make sense. For instance, how often have you seen a high school graduation at night or in the rain, well you do in this film. That is just the tip of the craziness of this film.
The Howling Reborn is the perfect film to introduce younger audiences to the horror genre. If you are a fan of the original franchise, watch it instead. If you can get past the poor special effects and plot, then you will find a mildly entertaining film.