Special Extended Edition
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THE BEAST starring William Petersen from the best-selling author, Peter Benchley! Special Extended Version! Peter Benchley, the master of sea terror, returns with another tale of aquatic mayhem in this three hour, uncut version of The Beast. William L. Petersen (CSI, To Live and Die in LA) stars as Whip Dalton in this thrilling, nail-biting tale of man against the darkest secrets of the ocean deep. Fishing and jobs are becoming scarce in the small seaport village of Graves Point, when mysterious deaths and unexplained disappearances begin to occur. Divers vanish and a young couple disappears at sea, their empty raft washing up on the shore. When a large, strange claw is discovered on the raft, the unsettled towns-people call on the marine biologist Dr. Herbert Talley (Ronald Guttman), who identifies it as belonging to a rare giant squid. With the help of Whip Dalton, the hunt is on! It becomes a battle of wills between Dalton and Talley as they try to locate the Beast, without the Beast getting them. With almost 80 minutes of restored scenes previously edited from earlier releases, this is the original version, nominated for two Prime Time Emmy's. Directed by Jeff Bleckner, The Beast also stars Charles Martin Smith (Drive, The Triangle) and Karen Sillas (Wanted, Law and Order).
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"The Beast" 2-disc Special Extended Version wins my vote for the simplest bare-bones DVD that I've seen in years. The made-for-TV movie is presented in its original full screen broadcast format and includes 80 minutes of previously edited scenes from the original version. Both picture and audio are satisfactory. The interactive menus are unimpressive. There are no special features. If you're a serious collector, you may want to hold out on picking up this release. Overall, "The Beast" 2-disc Special Extended Version scores a "C-".
The Beast (Special Extended Edition) [Blu-ray]: I can not recommend the Blu-ray. The picture and sound quality are no better than a standard DVD. I was very disappointed that it did not have the enhanced quality you typically see on Blu-ray discs. The picture size is standard screen, not widescreen, and lacks anything remotely like Blu-ray features. The Blu-ray is overpriced because the lack of being a true Blu-ray. Stick to the regular DVD until they come up with a true Blu-ray.