HOWLING III (1987) Reviews and overview

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‘The “howling” terror continues’

Howling III is a 1987 Australian comedic horror film about a werewolf colony that has descended from a now-extinct marsupial wolf. Also known as Howling III: The Marsupials and The Marsupials: The Howling III

Written and directed by Philippe Mora (Pterodactyl Woman from Beverly Hills; Communion; The Beast Within) who was also responsible for Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf (1985).

The movie stars Barry Otto, Imogen Annesley, Max Fairchild and Dagmar Bláhová.


Long ago, the now-extinct marsupial wolf (a.k.a. Tasmanian Tiger) roamed the Australian Outback.

Today, a werewolf colony that has descended from these marsupials has taken over the land. This race of human-like creatures roams the outback, preying on the unsuspecting to feed their growing numbers. The race for survival is on as the humans struggle to contain these out of control creatures…



“The film’s self-conscious construction is what holds what would otherwise be a disharmonious assortment of nonsense together. Mora and the cast and crew are having fun with the material and giving themselves as much distance as possible from self-seriousness and pretensions of grandeur. Howling III is a stupid movie that is a relentlessly fun continuation of a series that established itself as a breed apart from the genre it’s associated with.” Battleship Pretension

“While this one’s extremely bizarre and sometimes off-putting in its weirdness, it’s also frequently hilarious, often very clever, more sophisticated and intelligent than one would expect and filled with interesting ideas. Instead of being the 2nd lowest-rated film in this series, I actually think it deserves to be the 2nd highest-rated, behind only the original.” The Bloody Pit of Horror


Howling III does try to be sensitive to the beasts, with Mora displaying their mistreatment at the hands of scientists and government stooges […] Mora doesn’t set a consistent tone, trying to balance jokes, satire, and sincerity, though he’s held back on all fronts by a lack of funds, delivering cheapy make-up effects and strange editing that tries to create excitement out of nothing special.”

“The movie has a lot of weirdness to it. Jerboa has a birth and whatever you can call the little thing that crawled out will leave you in a what the hell kind of mood. The Shapeshifter 8 movie within this movie is done in a parody style leaving me wonder if this entire movie is done as a parody and that they where going for a silly comedy of sorts.” Cinema Terror


“This film totally reworked the werewolf genre, and I’m not sure if it worked. The idea is supposed to be that they’re just a genetic off-shoot of homo sapien sapien. With that in mind, the story is preaching acceptance and understanding. There was still plenty of savage eating of people, so it wasn’t all Up With People, but on the other hand, it didn’t have that real horror movie feel that I want when I rent a werewolf picture.” Direct to Video Connoisseur 

“Tonally, Howling III is all over place. It’s never quite sure whether it wants to be a horror movie, a satire, or a straight-up comedy […] It’s got a great cast of veteran Australian character actors, there’s a few legitimately funny moments, and the 1905 footage of the natives killing the werewolf has an undeniably creepy vibe to it.” Good Efficient Butchery

“Philippe Mora has made a some okay films […] but it as though everything he demonstrated on those has lapsed into unabashed amateurishness here. The scares he attempts to generate are lame […] The Howling didn’t take itself too seriously either, but at least Joe Dante treated what he was doing and treated the audience with respect and invited us into a shared joke.” Moria

Mora doesn’t seem interested in frightening his audience at all. There are no real scares here, and only occasional tension […] It’s clear that the budget was pretty low, not all of the effects are particularly convincing, but by throwing in some distinctly Australian elements (some might say clichés) Mora does at least deliver a strangely entertaining film with some distinct cultural elements.” Rock! Shock! Pop!

” …the werewolves end up looking like some sort of warped combination of a Tex Avery wolf drawn by an 8-year-old using their teeth. Seriously, look at those pics and tell me a FX factory missing its supply of silly putty and fake hair.  To add insult to injury, Mora makes this one completely bloodless during werewolf attacks.” Video Junkie

The Howling 3: The Marsupials is a f*cking mess but you can see glimpses of a good movie trying to get out whenever Imogen is on screen. She gives a great performance and it’s a pity she wasn’t given more to do than breed, birth, and hide out. I also enjoyed seeing Frank Thring from Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome as the Hitchcock-esque director.” The Video Vacuum

Cast and characters:

Barry Otto … Professor Harry Beckmeyer
Max Fairchild … Thylo
Imogen Annesley … Jerboa
Dagmar Bláhová … Olga Gorki (as Dasha Blahova)
Lee Biolos … Donny Martin (as Leigh Biolos)
Ralph Cotterill … Professor Sharp
Frank Thring … Jack Citron
Michael Pate … President
Jon Ewing … General Forster
Barry Humphries … Dame Edna Everage – Academy Award Presenter
William Yang … Siberian Peasant
Deby Wightman … Wolf Woman
Christopher Pate … Agent #1
Jerome Patillo … Agent #2
Carole Skinner … Yara
Jennifer Vuletic … Goolah (as Jenny Vuletic)
Glenda Linscott … Bahloo
Roger Eagle … Priest
Richard Carter … First Drunk (as Ric Carter)
Lionel Curtin … Second Drunk
Bob McCarron … Werewolf in Park
Mary Acres … Paper Seller
Steve Shaw … Horror Movie Actor
Megan Shapcott … Horrow Movie Starlet
Bob Barrett … Policeman #1
Bill Collins … Doctor #1
David Cahill … Doctor #2
Mary Haire … Nurse
Fred Welsh … Dan Ruggle
Brian Adams … General Miller
Peter Van der Stolk … Michael
Burnham Burnham … Kendi
Allan Penney … Spud McCormack (as Alan Penny)
Tony Deary … Max

Filming locations:

In and around Sydney, Australia


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