11/17/2017  
Take Me To The River on Blu-ray & DVD Feb 5Phantom From 10,000 Leagues (1956) on Blu-ray & DVD Jan 5Condemned on DVD & Blu-ray Jan 5Broad City: Season 2 on DVD Jan 5McHale's Navy: The Complete Series on DVD No 17Return to Sender on Blu-ray & DVD Sep 29The Phantom of the Opera with Lon Chaney Blu-ray & DVD Oct 13

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Jennifer Esposito Is Your Newest NCIS Agent in Season 1...
Critics Are Split on Ghostbusters Reboot ...
'Respect is key': The Game, Snoop Dogg lead march to LA...
Kristen Stewart's Sheer Dress At 'Equals' Premiere -- S...
"A Slow Slipping Away"-- Kris Kristofferson's Long-Undi...
Fox News' Roger Ailes Sued for Sexual Harassment by Ous...
Garrison Keillor Retires from 'Prairie Home Companion' ...
Jennifer Aniston is Pregnant: Star Steps Out in Loose D...
Hiddleswift Is One Big Song Promotion -- A Theory...
Elvis Presley's daughter Lisa Marie Presley files for ...





Microsoft Store

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Image Entertainment presents
The Beast Must Die (1972)

"Just part of my grand design, the same plan that got you all here at the same time. Why do you think I invited you? Because every one of you sitting right here in this room has one thing in common: Death."
- Tom Newcliffe (Calvin Lockhart)

Review By: Mark Zimmer   
Published: June 28, 2001

Stars: Calvin Lockhart, Peter Cushing, Charles Gray, Anton Diffring
Other Stars: Ciaran Madden, Tom Chadbon, Michael Gambon, Marlene Clark
Director: Paul Annett

Manufacturer: WAMO
MPAA Rating: PG for violence, mild gore
Run Time: 01h:32m:06s
Release Date: April 10, 2001
UPC: 014381616125
Genre: horror


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
C- D+C-D+ D-

DVD Review

It has often been said that there are no new stories, just new ways of combining the details. The Beast Must Die is a combination of three classics, The Most Dangerous Game, And Then There Were None and The Wolf Man, dressed up with a silly little gimmick. The "Werewolf Break" three-quarters of the way through the movie gives the armchair detective a chance to state which of the suspects he feels is the werewolf. The gimmick has a little bit of dated charm to it, especially when accompanied by the foreboding tones of the narrator, giving a throwback to the old 1950s William Castle movies.

Millionaire big game hunter Tom Newcliffe (Calvin Lockhart) has converted his estate into a surveillance operation with high security for the purpose of bagging the biggest game of all: a werewolf. To that end, he has invited five guests to his home, each of whom leaves a trail of death and missing or mutilated bodies in their wake. Newcliffe is convinced that one of his guests (among them, Peter Cushing and Charles Gray) is a werewolf, and means to hunt him or her to death. But the werewolf proves elusive and the body count quickly rises.

This movie, originally produced by the British Amicus studio, works on two levels; one is the kiddie werewolf story which has gaping holes in its logic and is downright silly. Why must one of the guests be a werewolf? For that matter, accepting werewolves, why must only one of them be a lycanthrope? Why couldn't they all be? But this never occurs to Newcliffe. On a far more interesting level, we have the story of a hunter gone completely mad, entrapping these people on his estate and threatening to kill them; Tom's paranoia results in any attempt to escape being taken as proof of that guest's inhuman status. Indeed, this view of the movie is far more chilling and more emphasis on it would have resulted in a far better production.

Making the millionaire a well-spoken black man is an intriguing twist that isn't really taken anywhere. The marvelous Marlene Clark (who in the next year would star in the cult vampire classic Ganja and Hess) is effective as Tom's long-suffering wife Caroline. Peter Cushing adopts a not-altogether-convincing Swedish accent as Dr. Lundstrom, an archaeologist obsessed with lycanthropy. His character plays fast and loose with established werewolf lore, coming up with a new and different "fact" all through the movie. Charles Gray as a murderous UN delegate is one of the few having a good time with his part, being snide, surly and bitterly humorous throughout. The other guests are a rather colorless lot who don't have much to do or say, though the hairy Paul Foote (Tom Chadbon) has a nice moment as he contemplates shaving the hair off the backs of his hands with a straight razor.

There are precious few special effects here. Given the mystery setup of the film, there aren't any transformation shots; even after the monster is revealed there isn't any transformation, but immediately the character turns into a large dog (much of the time, it looks like a large stuffed dog!) very abruptly.

In the end, the mystery is solvable, though the clues are subtle. A repeat viewing discloses that the film does generally play fair on its clues, although the 'facts' about lycanthropy that Dr. Lundgren gives out keep getting slightly revised when all of the suspects get eliminated.

Rating for Style: C-
Rating for Substance: D+

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.66:1 - Widescreen
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: Although the film proper appears to be transferred in a proper 1.66:1 widescreen ratio, the distributor credits are cropped at the sides, indicating that it was probably shown in a 1.85:1 format, at least in the US. The source print is in fairly poor condition, with lots of speckles throughout. These are particularly distracting during the many nighttime scenes. The compression work is adequate, without the picture looking digital or over-enhanced. Colors are generally good, although washed-out and dated in some of the exteriors. Blacks are good though shadow detail is lacking. Many of the nighttime scenes are illegible in the extreme.

Image Transfer Grade: C-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
MonoEnglishno


Audio Transfer Review: The original mono audio is included, in all of its crackly and hissy glory. Clearly nothing was done to help the presentation here. The sound is quite thin and lacking in range. However, dialogue is generally understandable, which is good considering there are no subtitles.

Audio Transfer Grade: D+

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 12 cues
Packaging: Snapper
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: Nothing whatsoever, not even a trailer. Chaptering is a little less than adequate.

Extras Grade: D-

 

Final Comments

An odd horror-mystery with enormous holes in the plot, with low entertainment value. Only for British horror aficionados.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

television, jennifer esposito, blue bloods, ncis, mark harmon. duane henry, wilmer valderrama, michael weatherly, bull, movie, ghostbusters, comedy, chris helmsworth, melissa mcarthy, kristen wiig, celebrity, rap, game, shoop dogg, jayceon terrell taylor, alton sterling, kristen stewart, equals, jonathan simkhal, nicholas hoult, music, kris kristofferson, country music hall of fame, alzheimers, lyme disease, fox news, gretchen carlson, fox and friends, steve doocy, roger ailes, the real story with gretchen carlson, radio, garrison keillor, a prairie home companion, jennifer anniston, baby bump, justin theroux, taylor swift, tom hiddleston, calvin harris, lisa marie presley, michael lockwood, riley and benjamin keough, danny keough, michael jackson, nicolas cage, tom affleck, boston fan, bill simmons, hbo show, any given wednesday, tom brady, deflategate, hamilton, lin-manuel mianda, periscope, heart tweet machine, hamilton mixtape, cable, hbo, curb your enthusiasm, larry david, bernie sanders, saturday night live, maya and marty, christina grimmie, murdered, plaza live, before you exit, marcus grimmie, nashville, cmt, president brian phillips, the tonight show, jimmy fallon, president obama, the roots, hillary clinton, tim mcgraw, faith hill, maggie mcgraw, humble and kind, ellen degeneres show, titi pierce, coldwell banker robbins & free realty, hairspray live!, tracy turnblad, york theatre company, john waters, jennifer hudson, harvey fierstein, martin short, derek hough, j.k. rowling, harry potter and the cursed child, noma dumezweni, emma watson, judd apatow, paul freig, melissa mccarthy, romance, history channel, roots, remake, anika noni rose, t.i., malachi kirby, josh duhamel, transformers, fergie, black eyed peas, axl, double dutchess, abc, music city, grand ole opry, chip esten, lennon stella, the voice, alisan porterm, christina aguilera, ceelo green, ariana grande, sia, the little big town, 2016 billboard music awards, pink, just like fire, pamela neal, warrior princess, send my love (to your new lover), billboard music awards, adele, patrick daughters, bryan cranston, lbj, all the way, melissa leo, frank langella, todd weeks, hard sell, kristin chenoweth, wicked

On Facebook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store