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The Beast Must Die

48 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Wealthy big game hunter Tom Newcliffe (Calvin Lockhart) has tracked and killed practically every type of animal in the world. But one creature still evades him, the biggest game of all - a werewolf. Tom invites five guests -- Dr. Christopher Lundgren (Peter Cushing), Paul Foote (Tom Chadbon), Bennington (Charles Gray), Jan Jarmokowski (Michael Gambon) and Davina (Ciaran Madden)-- to his island knowing they all are tied one way or another to unusual circumstances of death… and that one of them is a werewolf. Add to the mix Tom’s alluring wife Caroline (Marlene Clark) and surveillance expert, Pavel (Anton Diffring), Tom tracks the werewolf but is unable to kill it. One by one the creature kills the isolated guests.

Special Features

  • Commentary by director Paul Arnett
  • "Directing The Beast" featurette
  • Paul Arnett's tribute to Peter Cushing
  • Cast and crew bios
  • Liner notes
  • Trailers
  • Still gallery

Product Details

  • Actors: Calvin Lockhart, Peter Cushing, Marlene Clark, Charles Gray, Anton Diffring
  • Directors: Paul Annett
  • Writers: Paul Annett, James Blish, Michael Winder, Scott Finch
  • Producers: John Dark, Max Rosenberg, Milton Subotsky
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Dark Sky Films
  • DVD Release Date: July 25, 2006
  • Run Time: 93 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0007VY558
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #63,112 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Beast Must Die" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Matthew C. Pinkerton on October 22, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
I recently purchased this film on DVD purely as a matter of nostalgia.
This flick first caught my attention one dark, lonely night when I was five or six years old and suffering from my seasonal allergies and asthma attack. This movie both entertained me and scared me to death. It has been twenty-three years since I last saw it and, to my surprise, I still think it's a really good movie, though for very different reasons.
Sure they put a fur coat on a black dog and expect us to buy it as a wolf. Sure the soundtrack seems better suited to "Shaft in Merry Ol' England" as opposed to a modern gothic horror film. Sure the acting is heavily stylized and, at times, just plain goofy. Sure the "Werewolf Break" in which the audience is given thirty seconds in which to dissect a fairly uncomplicated mystery is way out in Goofyville, but who cares?! Anyone who finds fault with the above is, quite obviously, someone who should not be watching this film in the first place. Like many films made in the long ago and far away, you have to accept a certain level of culture shock. Like many horror films you have to be willing to suspend your disbelief nigh on to the breaking point. Like many British films you have to put up with acting that seems more suited to Stratford on Avon than Dogma 95. Accept these as simple facts of life or don't rent it, folks. It's just that simple.
I've read several negative reviews for this particular film which stress the above elements over and over again. Surprisingly, many of these are written by avowed horror hounds who would probably love the movie if it had nudity and/or more gore. I'm certainly no prude and would turn away from neither should a "Director's Cut" of "The Beast Must Die" ever surface.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Aaron Smith on November 16, 2001
Format: DVD
I first discovered this movie about 15 years ago when it ran on a rainy Saturday afternoon throwaway slot. This isn't a great movie, but it's a great potboiler, where even if you know how it's going to end, you like watching the characters unravel throughout the story. Camp at its best.
You don't see movies like this anymore, probably because they don't use self-conscious ironic detachment. The (over)acting must be good enough that the players actually inhabit their roles. Play it straight and it's unwatchable. The effects aren't so special, so it's just as well that the action is implicit rather than graphic.
Everything about the film is dated--there's no mistaking the costumes or the music for any era other than the mid 70's. For that matter, the voiceover, the ticking clock and the freeze-frame shots of the characters probably looked dated even when the movie was new. But that's not necessarily a bad thing. Later the horror film evolved into the mindless slasher film in the late-70's-early 80's, where the killer was only a setpiece, and then into the 90's, where the ironic, self-aware Scream type picture cannibalized the former genre. So hungry were moviegoers for subtle, sincere horror that they drooled over Blair Witch. It was a valiant effort, the spookfest had all been done better, when films relied on pacing, acting and camera angle to scare the audience instead of gore.
It's surprising enough that this film merited a DVD release at all and I was so thankful to find it that I didn't even care about the lack of outtakes and extra comments. The next rainy Saturday afternoon I'm watching this again.
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22 of 28 people found the following review helpful By cookieman108 on August 3, 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
From Dark Sky Films comes the DVD release of The Beast Must Die (1974), part of their `The Amicus Collection' DVD series (two other films, so far, include 1973's And Now the Screaming Starts and 1972's Asylum), which I was very excited to see for two reasons, the first being I don't think Amicus has really gotten its due over the years (overshadowed by their competitor Hammer Studios), and the second being my past experiences with Dark Sky Films have been good ones as they seem to put forth an exceptional effort in their DVD releases. Directed by Paul Annett ("Roald Dahl's Tales of the Unexpected"), the film stars Calvin Lockhart (Uptown Saturday Night, Predator 2) and Peter Cushing (Twins of Evil, The Creeping Flesh, Star Wars), who frequently appeared in both Amicus and Hammer film releases. Also appearing is Marlene Clark (Beware! The Blob), Charles Gray (Diamonds Are Forever, The Rocky Horror Picture Show), Ciaran Madden (Swing Kids), Tom Chadbon (Tess), Michael Gambon (Toys, Layer Cake), and Anton Diffring (Circus of Horrors, Fahrenheit 451).

Lockhart plays Tom Newcliffe, an obsessive, wealthy big game hunter who invites a small group of individuals under false pretenses to his isolated country estate as he's out for the biggest game of them all, a real live see, Tom believes one of his guests is, in fact, a werewolf, and he's scheduled their stay during time when he knew there'd be a full moon in the hopes that the individual afflicted would transform allowing Tom the hunt of a lifetime.
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