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Howling II: Stirba - Werewolf Bitch

Howling II movie poster
Directed by Philippe Mora
Produced by Steven A. Lane
Written by Novel:
Gary Brandner
Robert Sarno
Gary Brandner
Starring Christopher Lee
Annie McEnroe
Reb Brown
Marsha Hunt
Sybil Danning
Music by Stephen W. Parsons
Cinematography Geoffrey Stephenson
Editing by Charles Bornstein
Distributed by Sony Pictures Entertainment
Release date(s) August 28, 1985
Running time 91 min.
Country United States
United Kingdom
Language English
Preceded by The Howling
Followed by Howling III

Howling II: Stirba - Werewolf Bitch (also known as Howling II: Your Sister is a Werewolf) is a 1985 horror sequel to The Howling directed by Philippe Mora.

Although Gary Brandner co-wrote the screenplay, the film Howling II is largely unrelated to his Howling II novel (a.k.a. Return of the Howling) from 1979, though like that book it was the first in its series to introduce Eastern European customs and Gypsies into its werewolf mythology.

It was marketed with the tagline "The rocking, shocking new wave of horror!"


Plot summary

Ben White attends the funeral of his sister, journalist Karen White, the heroine of the previous film. Though never mentioned Karen's husband Bill Neils funeral has presumably already tooking place. Ben meets both Jenny Templeton, one of Karen's colleagues, and Stefan Crosscoe, a mysterious interloper who claims the slain reporter was a werewolf. Providing videotaped evidence of the transformation — and turning up to destroy Karen as her undead body rises from the grave — Crosscoe convinces Ben and Jenny to accompany him to Transylvania to battle Stirba, an immortal werewolf queen. Along the way, the do-gooders encounter Mariana, another lusty werewolf siren, and her minion Erle.

Arriving in the Balkans, Ben and company wander through an ethnic folk festival, unaware that Stirba is off in her castle having sex with other werewolves and plotting their downfall. Eventually, the adventurers do battle with Stirba in an assault that involves disguised dwarves, mutilated priests, supernatural parasites, and surprise revelations.


Generally regarded as breath-takingly awful, the film failed to garner as much attention or commercial success as the original film. The film was shot on location in, what was at the time, the country of Czechoslovakia - for example in the ossuary in Mělník (a town in Central Bohemia), which the story claims to Transylvania. This is incorrect, however, as Transylvania is in modern day Romania. The Howling II in later years has acquired a cult following, perhaps due to the presence of cult actors Sybil Danning, Reb Brown and Christopher Lee. Or alternately it may be because a quick shot of Sybil Danning revealing her breasts is, for no apparent reason or specific narrative purpose, repeated on a film loop during the end credits.


  • In 1990 when the marvellous Christopher Lee was cast in Gremlins 2: The New Batch, one of the first things he did was apologize to director Joe Dante (who also directed The Howling) for being in this film.[1]
  • It is the only Howling sequel that directly follows the original film's events (though with some baffling incongruities) and is also the only Howling film to feature the input of the original novelist, Gary Brandner. Brandner was critical of the original 1981 film which was only a loose adaptation of his 1977 novel, and some elements of this sequel may have been deliberately divergent from the previous film, though some (such as this film's ret-conning of that film's ending to be a secret) seem to be accidental.[2]
  • Annie McEnroe previously appeared in another underrated horror film The Hand.
  • Co-star Marsha Hunt and Christopher Lee previously appeared in Dracula AD 1972.
  • The movie is mentioned in the Yo La Tengo song "From a Motel 6" in the line "I climb where I can see - you're close but I won't reach. Blank stare at the TV- THE HOWLING II's on Channel 3 I drift off to sleep, while the snow falls on the screen"

Main cast


  1. ^ Joe Dante's DVD audio commentary for Gremlins 2: The New Batch.
  2. ^ Documentary on The Howling DVD, Regions 1 and 2

External links

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