While Howling 2 and 3 had almost no character development or setup and were mostly just a lot of werewolf nonsense, Howling 4 is pretty much the complete opposite. There is a much more involved storyline here, although some of it is not explained very well. The hallucinations that Marie has at the beginning of the movie - which in fact turn out to be premonitions of a sort - aren't explained at all. She's having some kind of nervous breakdown and seeing these things because of... I don't know. She keeps having these hallucinations after they get to the cabin and it only serves to move the plot along and give Marie and Janice more clues to the mystery of Drago.
The cast of characters is okay, although not really interesting. Marie's husband Richard is all rugged and handsome, but soon goes full douche when he gets sick of hearing Marie's crazy talk about howling in the night. Marie herself is pretty blah, Janice is not at all believable as a former nun, and the only cool people around here are the husband and wife who own the general store. Eleanor, the eccentric local artist with unnaturally pointy boobs, reminded me a bit too much of Gozer. Anybody else see a resemblance? Maybe it's just the 80s.
So there are eventually going to be some werewolves in this werewolf movie, right? Unfortunately you have to be patient here because none of the really good stuff that horror fans are expecting come until literally the last ten minutes. There are some mild werewolf attacks on a pair of hikers, but it it done in POV so you don't really get to see anything. The awesomeness is short-lived and only barely saves the movie from how boring it was in the first hour and twenty minutes. When we first actually see a werewolf it is when Richard goes out to meet Eleanor in the woods to get it on again, and she changes - only for a second, mind you, but it's there.
In the end, Janice and Marie get rid of all the werewolves a little bit too easily and then it's all over. Again, Howling 4: The Original Nightmare is not a bad movie, but it's also one that's not very exciting until it's almost too late. The climax is fun, way more gory and disgusting than I expected from the rest of the movie, and since none of these Howling movies are even connected to each other in the first place, there's always room to grow! More werewolf fun to come!