Poor old train guard Joe, having been turned down for promotion he is stitched up by the new supervisor to work the night shift on the last service out of Waterloo. The train leaves the station and along with Ellen the refreshments hostess, they have to deal with a selection of Britain’s finest citizens. On board are a couple of pensioners, a smug yuppy, a chav and a kebab loving football fan with a bad stomach amongst others. When the train goes through a forest on route it hits something on the track. The driver goes to investigate, soon enough a howl is heard and the train is attacked by some kind of creature with a thirst for blood. Joe, Ellen and the passengers have to work together to fight off the attacker and it doesn’t help when someone has been bitten.
Director Paul Hyett’s debut feature (The Seasoning House) was very good but quite down and depressing. Howl is an entirely different beast (pun intended) and is unashamedly a fun horror ride (another pun). Hyett’s experience as a top effects guy helps with the rather unique design of the werewolf, which isn’t on all fours and not quite the wolfman look either. Although shot in a studio, the film ventures out into Black Park, home of of many a Hammer Horror for some nice wolf stalking scenes. The production team have certainly done well with their budget and the film doesn’t come across cheap or a bit amateurish like so many homegrown horrors recently usually of the ‘found footage’ variety.
It’s a real shame that the film didn’t get a cinema release (it had some festival showings) and has been delegated to the direct to DVD market. Please don’t let that put you off as Howl is wonderfully entertaining and any film that casts Duncan Preston (Doug from Emmerdale) as a moany OAP gets my vote every time.
- Starring Ed Speleers Holly Weston Sean Pertwee Shauna MacDonald
- Director Paul Hyett
- Distributor Metrodrome