When I saw "The Feeding" on the shelf for the first time, I immediately assumed it was one of the 9,275 straight-to-DVD vampire films that come out every year. The title would likely lead one to believe such. But I took a closer look and saw the tagline: "Part Man, Part Wolf, Pure Evil."
Now we're talking, I thought. I knew it had the possibility (if not probability) of being a dud, but it was a werewolf movie, so I had to give it a try.
Well, my feelings on this film can best be summed up with a couple comparisons: it wasn't quite as terrible as "Rage of the Werewolf", but it wasn't anywhere near as good as "The Beast of Bray Road." You can feel free to make your own rankings and assumptions based on that statement.
The story was a simple one, about a few young people camping in the woods where a violent monster is loose. A special agent comes in to try to hunt the creature down, but for some reason, only takes one partner instead of a whole crew.
Strangely enough, though, it doesn't turn into the type of film where people start dying while the others try to figure out what's going on. Instead, there's a monster attack at the very beginning, then a long gap of nothing but
character interaction. The werewolf claims its victims from the main cast within
maybe 20 minutes of each other, until there's only a couple survivors. Then the
survivors gamble on a way to kill it in the last twenty. That's about 40
minutes of a 90 minute movie where anything of worth happens. Maybe less.
Another very odd thing...throughout the entire movie, the characters avoid using the word "werewolf" as if it were under a strict copyright. They're always
about to say it, then they just stop and assume that everyone knows what
they're talking about.
The acting is pretty wooden, besides Robert Pralgo's. His character, Jack,
shows way more personality than the others. He also delivered his lines much
better. So, of course, he gets killed.
The werewolf is your typical hairy body with a mask that drips saliva. They do have the mouth move a little, but nothing intricate. The mask looks like a wolf's head that was smashed a few times. The kills are bloody, but the blood doesn't look all that real. Oh, and there is absolutely no transformation scene. You get to see the werewolf in human form at the end, but it means nothing outside of proving that it was a werewolf.
Really, it's just a dull movie. Unless you catch it on TV (I heard it was on Sci-Fi channel once or twice), don't bother going out of your way to see it. Unless you really like low-budget stuff.
Before you ask, no, "Horrors of War" is nothing like "Dog Soldiers." Its budget is lower, there aren't as many werewolves, and there are twice as many girls (that's right...two).
"Horrors of War" was originally conceived as an anthology of three monster stories based in the mid forties, near the end of World War II. Well, I think the film can best enjoyed when viewed as a collection of two main stories and a few side stories linked by a couple characters and separated by scenes featuring the Allied base camp. If viewed as a regular, one-story film, it just seems too erratic. So, I'm going to treat it as an anthology and review it as such.
First, we have a short opening scene, set in 1945, featuring a group of American soldiers encountering a zombie super soldier in Germany. It takes two shots to the head to take him down, and even that doesn't seem to kill him.
Oddly, everything after this scene takes place in late 1944; this is odd, because that puts the first scene at a point after the climax of the film.
Next, we have a battle from six months prior, setting up Capt. Russo's character, and featuring nothing extraordinary; just regular soldiers versus regular Nazis.
We meet Lt. Schmidt and Sgt. Gary, two Americans who will play important roles in the main stories. They're both assigned to Capt. Mitchell's squad of deviants and sent to occupied France. In this story, there are no zombies, but there is a long-haired werewolf that looks a lot like the one in Howling 6: The Freaks. Over the course of this story, we find out how bad of a person Capt. Mitchell is, we discover the identity of the werewolf, and we have seeds planted for another werewolf to appear later on.
After that mission, Schmidt and Gary are reassigned to Capt. Russo's team and sent to take out the heart of the Nazi super soldier experiments. We get a flashback to when Russo and Schmidt encountered their first undead super soldier.
September 1944, Russo's team is dispatched into enemy territory. They encounter a few super soldiers, and a final battle takes place at the Nazi lab with the ultimate super zombie, while one of the soldiers has to make the ultimate sacrifice.
The second werewolf appears in the final battle, but with little fanfare. He's the soldier who was bitten by the first wolf, and they seem to suggest that, at night, he goes out and kills Germans in his wolf form. But when we finally see him fighting the zombie, he's just there, with no transformation scene and nobody saying anything about it. Then, he's cast aside in favor of a different climax. This werewolf has more fur on his face, but, like the first one, seems pretty bat-like, with gray skin, an upturned nose, and big, pointy ears. He's kept in uniform, which is probably a good idea, because I doubt they could have made him look very convincing if he was half-undressed.
As a whole, "Horrors of War" is a pretty good film. They chose some good actors to be the soldiers. Joe Lorenzo, the actor playing Russo, shows a lot of character and facial expressions, and was probably the most believable of the bunch. I would recommend renting before you buy, and keep in mind that it's more of a Frankenstein-type movie than a werewolf or zombie movie.
On a side note, there's a scene where a German, being chased by a rogue zombie, runs to the Americans and begs, "Bitte, hilfen sie mir" repeatedly. Gary, translating, says he keeps saying something about a monster, but the phrase really means "Please, help me." Don't know where you get "monster" in any of that. But I digress.
"The Lunar Pack" is a low-budget werewolf anthology featuring three short films, hosted by Mistress Misty, an Elvira-esque goth girl who lives in a cheesy castle and spouts a lot of cheesy jokes. I want to say, for the record, that I love Mistress Misty in all her cheesiness, and she may be the best thing about this film. At least she makes it obvious that she knows her role.
The first story is called "Dark Rose: The Seven-Year Itch." Rose, on a vendetta against the vampires who killed her family, goes after one in an old castle. Unfortunately, she gets there at just the wrong time, and the vampire turns the tables. Good thing for Rose that there's a full moon. One brief werewolf vs. vampire battle later, and Rose has not only defeated her enemy, but she has a meal for the night.
Werewolf Rose has a hairy face, a canine nose, and claws. Whoever did the makeup apparently forgot to put any on her exposed belly; either that or she's only a quarter of a werewolf.
It turns out this is just a short teaser for a longer film, which I would be interested in seeing.
Next we have "Sheep's Clothing," a black and white detective story where a low-level private eye is hired to spy on a man's wife because he thinks she's cheating on him with the local church's priest. In reality, though, she has lycanthropy and is trying to get it cured. Too bad her husband gets a little trigger happy.
In this case, the werewolf is a person in a customized mask. There's a little bit of a transformation scene, but when its over, it obvious that the werewolf's body is still entirely human. I guess I'm being a little nit-picky, but they could have at least put some hair on her hands.
The last and longest story is "Crying Wolf." A young couple has a fight in their car one night, and the husband makes the mistake of leaving his wife alone. She's murdered by an animal that also bites him. A month later, he meets with the local sheriff. They don't get along. The husband thinks he's going to become a werewolf and wants to be locked up. The sheriff thinks he's nuts and wants to wait for the husband's cousin (also a cop) to come and get him. Then we find out who the original werewolf is, and it isn't really a surprise. And they fight.
There's a double transformation scene near the end, but it isn't anything special. Both of the characters thrash around, and then one has some really cheap CGI morphing of his face. One of the werewolves gets a full wolf mask complete with moving jaw, while the other just has a hairy face. Both look like Halloween costumes.
"The Lunar Pack" isn't for everyone, but if you can stand some low budget effects and production, and enjoy some cheesiness, then I think you might like it. It can be found as one of six films on Pendulum Pictures Beastly Butchers DVD set.
This very short film begins with Bryan Michael Stoller sitting in his office one night, talking on the phone and watching puppets on TV. His boss, who can be heard only in incoherent mumbles, apparently wants Stoller to make more parody films (in real life, he's made a number of them), including one called "A Canadian Werewolf in Hollywood." Stoller tells him he doesn't have the money to make any more spoofs, and making this werewolf one would be especially hard because of the transformations. In the background is a window with a fake full moon covered by fake clouds. Outside, a burglar sneaks up to the house.
So, in the middle of the conversation, the moon comes out and Stoller drops the phone as he transforms. A rip-off of "Bad Moon Rising" plays. We see him grow claws and hair, his ears get pointy, and he suddenly resembles Teen Wolf. Then his feet pop out of his shoes and his face lengthens a bit. Outside, the burglar sees Stoller's silhouette and flees. Stoller picks up the phone (off-camera) and, in a much deeper voice, says that he'll make the movie, but it has to be a night shoot. We never see Stoller's full wolf form.
Well, I could go into detail telling you whether or not this film is any good (it is, especially for a low-budget 80's short), but you could easily see it for yourself. Just go to YouTube and search "Canadian werewolf." That's how I saw it.