The Beyond (1981) (Blu-ray Review)

The Beyond (1981) (Blu-ray Review)

The Beyond (1981) (Blu-ray Review)

📅15 April 2015, 13:46

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The Beyond (1981) (Blu-ray Review)
Directed By: Lucio Fulci
Starring: Catriona MacColl, David Warbeck, Cinzia Monreale
Rated: R/Region A/2:40/1080p/Number of Discs 3
Available from Grindhouse Releasing

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The seven dreaded gateways to hell are concealed in seven cursed places… And on the day the gates of hell are opened, the dead will walk the earth! From legendary Italian horror master Lucio Fulci comes the ultimate classic of supernatural terror. A cursed hotel, built over one of the seven gateways to hell, becomes a malevolent abyss that begins devouring both the bodies and the souls of all who enter in a graphic frenzy of gory crucifixions, brutal chain-whippings, eyeball impalements, sulphuric acid meltdowns, flesh-eating tarantulas, throat-shredding demon dogs and ravenous bloodthirsty zombies. THE BEYOND is a towering achievement in hair-raising, mind-bending cinematic terror!

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When I was a kid there were only VHS tapes and due to the high price of these tapes in the 80s, most people would rent tapes and dub them off to a blank VHS tape. In my house, people just used whatever tape was at hand and as a result, often my cartoon had a horror movie behind it. This was how I first saw, The Beyond. Now I don’t remember the cartoon, but I sure remember The Beyond. It scared the hell out of me and stuck with me. Today, it is one of my all-time favorite horror movies and I have waited a long time for this release from Grindhouse Releasing and I am thrilled that this release is here and now in my hands. Let us now break this thing down. A young woman inherits an old hotel in Louisiana where after a series of supernatural ‘accidents’, she learns that the building was built over one of the entrances to Hell. With the door now being open, it sets the stage for some awesome visuals and some of the classic gore stuff that Fulci is known for and remembered very dearly for today. While some things here and there are a little hard to make sense of on just one viewing, it  still has the level of horror stuff going down that can keep the average movie goer awake at night, or give them nightmares. It’s hard to describe everything that takes place in this film to someone who hasn’t seen it, because it’s just so full of visuals worth seeing for yourself and so spectacular that words just don’t seem to do them justice. So, please look over me here a bit as I attempt to put this movie to words for this review. The best way to describe, The Beyond, is probably to say it’s like a nightmare on screen. A live action nightmare that can be very eerie and supper chilling. Fulci might have been a known atheist, but the man still was able to capture the very darkest visuals of what hell could be like on screen. And it’s the stuff this film gives you in that sense that makes it standout to people watching the movie even today. And even when creepy and bloody things aren’t going down on screen, you have actress, Catriona MacColl, in the leading role. An actress that has starred in a number of Lucio’s films, and I think it’s always a pure joy seeing her.

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Seeing as how the blood and gore is so strong and awesomely done, I think it’s only right we take a moment to talk about it (The gore is a lot of the fun with The Beyond). YES, this film does have a spider scene that looks fake in parts, but let’s be happy it’s the 80s and not ruined by crappy CGI like it would have been had this been made today. It’s still chilling and it still makes my skin crawl regardless. We also have a number of evil beings that if they weren’t dead beforehand, die in very graphic ways that are awesome to witness. Of course once the film reaches it’s “outer realm” scene (you’ll know which one I’m talking about when you see it), it’s bleak, it’s kinda vague, but it is certainly spine tingling. I wish we had more people like Fulci around today making horror films. Of course, this movie does pack some things and scenes that may be hard to figure out, or might just not make sense upon the first viewing. I think this is one of those movies that gets better each time you watch it and it’s very much worth watching more than once. It’s never dull, it’s packed with cool characters like a blind lady named, Emily, and it’s loaded with everything that made both Fulci and this time period great. And once you get to the ending, it’s true you may be a bit confused. But it’s also true that you will be majorly creeped the hell out as well (This movie can cause that a lot). It’s a classic, folks. There’s not a better way to word it than that. I’m always torn between this and Zombie when I’m asked what my favorite Fulci movie is. There’s just something about this one that makes my skin get goose bumps and I think it’s a great movie to show someone if you want to just freak them out. So is it better than Zombie? I don’t know if I can for sure say, but it’s at least on that same level and this is certainly the version of this film you need to own.

Extras

DISC 1
– Introduction from Catriona MacColl
– Color Pre-Credit Sequence
– Trailers and TV Spots
– Audio Commentary with stars Catriona MacColl and David Warbeck
DISC 2
– 48 Minute Looking Back – The Creation of The Beyond Feature
– Interviews with stars Catriona MacColl, Cinzia Monreale and Giovanni De Nava, U.S. production manager Larry Ray, make-up artists Giannetto DeRossi and Maurizio Trani, cinematographer Sergio Salvati, writer Dardano Sacchetti, producer Fabrizio De Angelis, composer Fabio Frizzi, original U.S. distributor Terry Levene, and Antonella Fulci
Rare archival interviews with director Lucio Fulci and David Warbeck
– Still Gallery
– Grindhouse Releasing Trailers
DISC 3
– Original Soundtrack

Quality of Transfer: 93%

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