Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Beast Within / The Bat People|
Actors: Bibi Besch, Paul Clemens, R.G. Armstrong
Director: Philippe Mora
Genres: Horror, Science Fiction & Fantasy
No Description Available. Genre: Horror Rating: NR Release Date: 11-SEP-2007 Media Type: DVD
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Among the Best...The Beast Within is a Forgotten Masterpiece
Charlie B. Counselman | Greensboro, NC, USA | 11/17/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Beast Within is an absolute classic of the horror genre, regardless of its status as a "drive-in" or "Grindhouse" or "Midnite" movie. This film has never had the recognition it deserves. It is atmospheric, edgy, and extremely well acted. The teenager undergoes a gradual transformation into a giant man-cicada swamp creature, but about 85 percent of the film focuses on his mental change. It is not a cheesy swamp monster physical transformation, but it is more like in the film "Christine" where you watch this ordinary teenager turn into a blood crazed loony.
His change is kind of a metaphor for puberty, much the way the "Ginger Snaps" films depicted turning into a werewolf as a metaphor for a girl going through puberty. What carries the film is the boy's acting ability as he grows creepier and creepier. Ronny Cox (the guitar playing city slicker from Deliverance) is great as his concerned father coping with the fact that his son may actually be the offspring of a savage beast-man. And L.Q. Jones is another recognizable face, reprising his role as a rural southern sheriff.
Another quality of the film is the way the story deals with the way some small towns have a guilty secret. Some vile crime against humanity lurks in it's past. It is a quiet place in the middle of nowhere, yet something horrible happened there 17 years earlier that they just want to forget. Then along comes this boy...
The climax of the film features quite incredible creature effects that will satisfy the gorehounds and probably nauseate the film critics. This film is an absolute must-see for horror fans, especially if you enjoy similar films like those of David Cronenberg and Stephen King. I would love to see a special edition release of this film with extras and more info about this lesser known horror gem."
Beasts and Bats
Stanley Runk | Camp North Pines | 10/16/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Beast Within begins this metamorphosis themed Midnite Movies double feature. This was a movie that played sometimes on HBO back in the day and is more or less a forgotten 80s horror flick. It's actually quite fun. On her wedding night, a woman is raped by a mutant in a swamp(hey, at least it starts off with a bang). 17 years later, the child of this unholy union has become rather ill, and the parents now have to go back to the small town where the "incident" occurred to find out all they can about the boy's real father(the human dad wasn't there when the rape happened, and the wife was unconscious, so none of them knew it was a monster that performed the deed) and hopefully shed light on their child's illness. The boy, Michael, also is drawn to the town and soon begins killing folks of a specific bloodline. Michael's affliction resembles that of a werewolf in the sense that he turns homicidal at night and acts kinda like an animal. Other than that, for his "transformation", his face gets pale, his teeth look dirty and he gets some black rings around his eyes. When his change finally happens, he resembles an adult version of one of the babies from Larry Cohen's It's Alive movies. We soon discover that Michael and his murders are linked to the story of a local boy who was imprisoned in a basement years earlier. There's actually more plot here than you'd expect from this kind of movie. Enough clues are given to you to get a grip on why these things are happening, but not everything is explained and you're left in the dark about some of the small details. Needless to say, while this may never win any awards, The Beast Within is definitely not boring. A very fun little piece of horror nonsense that in itself is worth the purchase of the dvd.
The Bat People(it shoulda been called The Bat Person) isn't bad. It's not terribly good, but certainly painless to sit through. During a tour of a cave, a husband and wife stray from the tour to engage in a little spelunking of their own when hubby is bitten by a bat. Everyone's fearing rabies, but rabies is child's play compared to what he gets. Poor John Beck starts getting attacks of....well, I'm not sure what you'd call them other than a case of eyes that like to roll up. Soon his hands are black and webbed, and before you know it, he's prowling the streets and beating the crap out of department store mannequins. Soon he moves on to human victims. Beck's wife isn't sure what to think about her husband's bizarre behavior, and it doesn't help that the local sheriff is making the moves on her. The sheriff has also got his eye on Beck and thinks he has something to do with the recent string of murders. The actual bat makeup is only shown at the end, and briefly. It's not bad and looks more like a werewolf. It was designed by none other than Stan Winston(credited as "Stanley".). You may not find yourself watching The Bat People all that much, but like I said before, The Beast Within is worth the purchase of the disc."
Two very average horror pictures; Beast Within is the better
Brian T | Canada | 05/04/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Another "one good, one average" pairing, with BEAST WITHIN the clear winner. I'm sure I'm late to the party on this one, but it's Aussie director Philippe Mora's fault. I suffered through a few of his later movies (HOWLING III, COMMUNION, BREED APART, PTERODACTYL WOMAN FROM BEVERLY HILLS -shudder-), so I avoided BEAST WITHIN like the plague figuring it had to be just as average. In many ways it is, but the ace up Mora's sleeve in so many of his films seems to be his casts, and this one's got a lot of great faces: Ronny Cox, Don Gordon, R.G. Armstrong, L.Q. Jones, John Dennis Johnston, Luke Askew . . .I mean, there's a whole bunch of talented ugly on display in this one! Mora's other ace here is probably writer Tom Holland; hardly surprising this guy would go on to several solid horror efforts of his own, including some Stephen King stuff; elements of BEAST, like the whole cozy-town-with-a-secret and the twitchy, easily-angered oddball characters out to protect it, smell like King-style Americana through and through, although this is based on a novel by a lesser-known writer.
The other film in this set, THE BAT PEOPLE (1974), is a silly pedestrian shocker from Jerry Jameson, a TV director who went on, briefly, to bigger and better things like AIRPORT 77 and RAISE THE TITANIC before the latter seemingly doomed him to while away his days on the small screen. TV stalwart Stewart Moss. in what was surely one of his few theatrical leads, plays a scientist bitten by a bat while visiting caves with real-life and on-screen wife Marianne McAndrew. Soon, he sporadicallyl turns into a pajama-clad man-bat creature (with makeup effects by "Stanley" Winston) who preys on the locals in some unidentified Colorado town and a nearby ski resort. Michael Pataki has fun playing a typical hick sherriff, who knows exactly who the mystery murderer is, but seems to get more jollies out of the chase (and hitting on the killer's wife!). This flick is much better enjoyed in the MST3K version."