The Beyond (1981)
Directed By: Lucio Fulci
Starring: Catriona MacColl, David Warbeck, Cinzia Monreale, Antoine Saint-John, Veronica Lazar
Synopsis: The murder of an artist at a hotel opens one of the seven doors of death, creating a gateway for the dead to walk the Earth.
Thoughts: The Beyond is often considered to be Lucio Fulci’s greatest film. Oddly enough, I managed to see 10 other Fulci movies before watching it, which is a little backwards for the most part. I had always wanted to see it, but never ran across a copy that I wanted to pay for, at least until Arrow released their phenomenal Blu-Ray in the UK, which just happens to play on US players as well. I was so eager to see it that I popped it in late on a Friday night after being on the road all week. I was exhausted, but wanted badly to watch it.
The result was dream-like. I don’t recall all the details of the movie, which is odd for me. I generally devour a movie piece by piece, taking note of the acting, directing, effects and more, but this time I just experienced the movie. Fulci’s use of color, fog and symbolism was pretty amazing. The ending, in particular, was great. That being said, the film nerd in me can’t wait to revisit The Beyond to peel back the covers and explore the more technical aspects of the movie.
The Beyond is part of Lucio Fulci’s pseudo trilogy The Gates of Hell, along with City of the Living Dead and The House by the Cemetery, but I also think that another of Fulci’s most popular films, Zombi 2, is a good companion piece as well. It’s as if Zombi 2 is the aftermath of The Gates of Hell.
Fulci’s movies can be hit or miss (Manhattan Baby anyone?), but The Beyond is easily one of his hits. I suggest ordering yourself a copy of Arrow’s Blu Ray and enjoy, whether it is the first time watching this or the hundredth.