From Beyond

What is it about the Jeffrey Combs/Stuart Gordon combination that gives me shivers? Of course we all love Re-Animator, BUT, what about Gordon’s lesser-known follow up FROM BEYOND? If you haven’t seen this gem, now is the time to pick up a copy, as MGM recently unleashed Stuart Gordon’s uncut masterpiece in all it’s bloody fucked up glory.

The film starts off with physicist Dr. Crawford Tillinghast (Jeffrey Combs) in his home laboratory working with some kind of crazy machine. We get a lightshow, and suddenly Tillinghast can see some kind of eel-like creature floating around in mid air. Tillinghast goes to tell his associate Dr. Edward Pretorius (Ted Sorel) that what they have been working on, is well, working…It turns out Pretorius & Tillinghast have been working on some kind of machine (The Resonator) that will stimulate/vibrate the pineal gland (what some would refer to as “The Sixth Sense”). When The Resonator goes apeshit, so does Pretorius, leading Tillinghast to cut the power. The Resonator then begins to operate on it’s own, and someone or something eats Pretorius’ head just as the cops show up to check on the disturbances coming from their lab. Tillinghast gets thrown into the psych ward, as he is labeled a madman who beheaded and killed Pretorius. After some medical tests performed on Tillinghast, we meet Dr. Katherine McMichaels (Barbara Crampton) who believes that Tillinghast is onto something and wishes to recreate his previous experiments to tap into the power of pineal gland and The Resonator. Tillinghast is released into the custody of Dr. McMichaels and Officer Buford “Bubba” Brownlee (the amazing Ken Foree!) so Dr. McMichaels & Dr. Tillinghast can resume the work started by Dr. Pretorius & Dr. Tillinghast (much to Tillinghast’s dismay). The trio then unleash hell upon themselves as McMichaels continues to fuck with The Resonator and while a bunch of wacky monsters continue to haunt them, a monsterized version of Dr. Pretorius (who by now we know is an S & M lovebug) attempts to take over the group… from beyond. I am going to leave it at that, the rest is up to you to find out…and trust me, you want to find out.

I know this is yet ANOTHER Stuart Gordon directed/Brian Yuzna produced H.P. Lovecraft adaptation (with virtually the entire Re-Animator cast), and everytime I see “adaptation” I sort of cringe at some of the “adaptations” I have seen…BUT…something magical happens when Gordon and Yuzna put their heads together to do Lovecraft. What you find out when watching a film like From Beyond is that the Gordon/Yuzna combo doesn’t make horror movies, they don’t make sci-fi movies…they make masterpieces with horror & sci-fi elements.

From Beyond was released in 1986, and it is NOTHING like ANYTHING else released that year. The best part about watching From Beyond today in 2007 is 20 plus years later this movie is still amazing! The story is unlike anything you have ever seen, the effects are slimy, rubbery, stop motion and gory, the score is chilling and epic-like, and the cast is fucking amazing. Combs is his usually jumpy self (and the more I think about it, I think he is one of my favorite actors still working today), Foree is his usually tough as nails self and Crampton is her sexy self who gets curious about bondage in this film…I dig it. While I have heard rumors about a remake floating around the Internet, I would rather see a sequel. Fuck man, I would even settle for a 60 minute sequel in the form of a Stuart Gordan masters of horror episode as I feel there is more to be told in the story line for Tillinghast and crew…. Yes, it’s THAT good.
This isn’t the kind of film that can be summed up in a written review and really must be seen to be believed.

Charlie “What about the hard-on I got?” Brown

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~ by exploitnation on May 10, 2008.

4 Responses to “From Beyond”

  1. “From Beyond was released in 1986, and it is NOTHING like ANYTHING else released that year…” Damn straight, Mr. Brown! After a life of watching “Re-Animator” regularly, I finally got around to sitting my ass down to watch the MGM release of “From Beyond” and my mind was blown away. I remember watching the old Laserdisc many ears ago but it became brutally obvious that I had corrupted my memory with too much horror and alcohol over they years cuz´ “From beyond” wasn´t at all like I remembered it… It was so much better! It´s violent, lurid, sexy (Barbara Crampton´s name is tattooed on my heart) and sleazy. In other words, a much more adult take on Lovecraft than “Re-Animator” is. I totally agree with you that when Yuzna and Gordon gets together to collaborate on Lovecraft material, something magical occurrs. A sequel to this in the shape of a “MOH” episode is an awesome idea. I would have loved to see that one.
    Oh, and since “Re-Animator” inspired you guys to write an awesome song, how about getting “From Beyond” on the next album?

  2. You know…that’s a great fucking idea…

  3. Thank you very much. I kinda got the urge myself there so I went ahead and wrote a lyric entitled “From Beyond”. That would make for a cool split record: two horror bands writing songs, inspired by the same horror films. What do you think about that?

  4. I think that is an awesome idea man…you guys rule.

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