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The Beast Within / The Bat People (1974)

Bibi Besch , Paul Clemens , Philippe Mora  |  R |  DVD
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

Price: $13.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Bibi Besch, Paul Clemens, R.G. Armstrong
  • Directors: Philippe Mora
  • Format: Color, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Mono), French (Mono), Spanish (Mono)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: September 11, 2007
  • Run Time: 193 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #210,431 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Beast Within / The Bat People" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

No Description Available.
Genre: Horror
Rating: NR
Release Date: 11-SEP-2007
Media Type: DVD

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
The Beast Within is an absolute classic of the horror genre, regardless of its status as a "drive-in" or "Grindhouse" or "Midnite" movie. This film has never had the recognition it deserves. It is atmospheric, edgy, and extremely well acted. The teenager undergoes a gradual transformation into a giant man-cicada swamp creature, but about 85 percent of the film focuses on his mental change. It is not a cheesy swamp monster physical transformation, but it is more like in the film "Christine" where you watch this ordinary teenager turn into a blood crazed loony.
His change is kind of a metaphor for puberty, much the way the "Ginger Snaps" films depicted turning into a werewolf as a metaphor for a girl going through puberty. What carries the film is the boy's acting ability as he grows creepier and creepier. Ronny Cox (the guitar playing city slicker from Deliverance) is great as his concerned father coping with the fact that his son may actually be the offspring of a savage beast-man. And L.Q. Jones is another recognizable face, reprising his role as a rural southern sheriff.
Another quality of the film is the way the story deals with the way some small towns have a guilty secret. Some vile crime against humanity lurks in it's past. It is a quiet place in the middle of nowhere, yet something horrible happened there 17 years earlier that they just want to forget. Then along comes this boy...
The climax of the film features quite incredible creature effects that will satisfy the gorehounds and probably nauseate the film critics. This film is an absolute must-see for horror fans, especially if you enjoy similar films like those of David Cronenberg and Stephen King. I would love to see a special edition release of this film with extras and more info about this lesser known horror gem.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars As a 12 year old, it scared me to death! February 15, 2010
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I saw The Beast Within when I was only 12 years old. It was on HBO late night and my brother and I were 'forbidden' to watch late night HBO. This movie terrified me! It made me regret sneeking downstairs in the middle of the night to watch it. My brother and I considered ourselves horror movie addicts. We made attempts to see as many as we could, but this one stopped us dead in our tracks. Years later, as an adult I had seen this movie in a video store and simply couldn't even bring myself to pick up the box! That's how deep-rooted my fear was. After reading other reviews, I have decided to purchase a copy and have my brother come over to watch it with me. Surely, 26 years later, it can't have the same effect, can it? Even if, as an adult, it seems corny and outdated, it will still have been worth the purchase price to be able to spend a couple hours with my brother reliving those moments of childhood adventure and maybe laughing at ourselves for having been so scared.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beasts and Bats October 16, 2007
The Beast Within begins this metamorphosis themed Midnite Movies double feature. This was a movie that played sometimes on HBO back in the day and is more or less a forgotten 80s horror flick. It's actually quite fun. On her wedding night, a woman is raped by a mutant in a swamp(hey, at least it starts off with a bang). 17 years later, the child of this unholy union has become rather ill, and the parents now have to go back to the small town where the "incident" occurred to find out all they can about the boy's real father(the human dad wasn't there when the rape happened, and the wife was unconscious, so none of them knew it was a monster that performed the deed) and hopefully shed light on their child's illness. The boy, Michael, also is drawn to the town and soon begins killing folks of a specific bloodline. Michael's affliction resembles that of a werewolf in the sense that he turns homicidal at night and acts kinda like an animal. Other than that, for his "transformation", his face gets pale, his teeth look dirty and he gets some black rings around his eyes. When his change finally happens, he resembles an adult version of one of the babies from Larry Cohen's It's Alive movies. We soon discover that Michael and his murders are linked to the story of a local boy who was imprisoned in a basement years earlier. There's actually more plot here than you'd expect from this kind of movie. Enough clues are given to you to get a grip on why these things are happening, but not everything is explained and you're left in the dark about some of the small details. Needless to say, while this may never win any awards, The Beast Within is definitely not boring. A very fun little piece of horror nonsense that in itself is worth the purchase of the dvd. Read more ›
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Another "one good, one average" pairing, with BEAST WITHIN the clear winner. I'm sure I'm late to the party on this one, but it's Aussie director Philippe Mora's fault. I suffered through a few of his later movies (HOWLING III, COMMUNION, BREED APART, PTERODACTYL WOMAN FROM BEVERLY HILLS -shudder-), so I avoided BEAST WITHIN like the plague figuring it had to be just as average. In many ways it is, but the ace up Mora's sleeve in so many of his films seems to be his casts, and this one's got a lot of great faces: Ronny Cox, Don Gordon, R.G. Armstrong, L.Q. Jones, John Dennis Johnston, Luke Askew . . .I mean, there's a whole bunch of talented ugly on display in this one! Mora's other ace here is probably writer Tom Holland; hardly surprising this guy would go on to several solid horror efforts of his own, including some Stephen King stuff; elements of BEAST, like the whole cozy-town-with-a-secret and the twitchy, easily-angered oddball characters out to protect it, smell like King-style Americana through and through, although this is based on a novel by a lesser-known writer.

The other film in this set, THE BAT PEOPLE (1974), is a silly pedestrian shocker from Jerry Jameson, a TV director who went on, briefly, to bigger and better things like AIRPORT 77 and RAISE THE TITANIC before the latter seemingly doomed him to while away his days on the small screen. TV stalwart Stewart Moss. in what was surely one of his few theatrical leads, plays a scientist bitten by a bat while visiting caves with real-life and on-screen wife Marianne McAndrew. Soon, he sporadicallyl turns into a pajama-clad man-bat creature (with makeup effects by "Stanley" Winston) who preys on the locals in some unidentified Colorado town and a nearby ski resort. Michael Pataki has fun playing a typical hick sherriff, who knows exactly who the mystery murderer is, but seems to get more jollies out of the chase (and hitting on the killer's wife!). This flick is much better enjoyed in the MST3K version.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Bat People SUCK!! In A Bad Way!!
Of course any horror fan knows that The Beast Within is a great independent horror film from the early 80's. But what about The Bat People? Read more
Published 12 hours ago by Jason Whitehouse
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Published 2 days ago by Michael A Filler
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
My husband loves these horror movies. B class, but classics. Thanks
Published 2 months ago by Patricia M. Roura
2.0 out of 5 stars The Bat People: Duh duh duh duh duh duh duh duh...
The Bat People (Jerry Jameson, 1974)

In the days before direct-to-video, you'd be surprised at the things that found their way to movie screens. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Robert Beveridge
2.0 out of 5 stars Two offerings that are now getting new releases yet again...
You should know that "The Bat People" will be released soon on a new DVD set with three other horror gems on the MGM DVD movies for you 'horror' series. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Leslie Karen Rigsbey
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect.
The beast whithin it's a great movie.
Contains Castilian audio and subtitles.
A great pack.
Good image quality.
Good buy for sure.
Published 18 months ago by gorgona
5.0 out of 5 stars beast within/bat people
Although this is a Christmas gift and they have not been seen yet, I am sure that my husband will be thrilled! Great seller, fast shipment. Highly recommend!! A+++++++++++++
Published on October 31, 2011 by frodoette
4.0 out of 5 stars Early Stan Winston creation
A more accurate title is "The Bat Person" but it doesn't sound quite as menacing. "The Beast Within" has already been heralded as a minor eighties classic so the real rarity here... Read more
Published on May 4, 2010 by TelegramSam
3.0 out of 5 stars Midnite Movies Rock( especially Fox releases)
Two fun movies for viewing late night while eating and drinking your favorite snack stuff...The Beast Within is my favorite...Scared my 10 year old nephew but he enjoyed it too.
Published on October 13, 2007 by Bruce Joyner
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