Beneath Still Waters (Widescreen)
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I'd probably have passed the one up altogether were it not based on a Matthew Costello novel. I had no idea when I sat down to watch it that it was directed by Stuart Gordon protege Brian Yuzna, who's done some very interesting stuff over the years (though, to be fair, some not-so-interesting stuff as well). Yuzna, as Gordon before him (with Dagon), heads over to Spain, presumably to make a cheaper movie, casts a few minor personages on their way up and some established Spanish stars, and injects as much Lovecraftian silliness into this manuscript as he possibly can. But for the production values and Yuzna's slightly less-steady hand, this might as well be a Gordon flick, and I mean that as praise.
In 1965, the small Spanish town of Marienbad is to be flooded when a dam is built to supply power to the new neighboring town, Desbaria. Two children are investigating the town before it gets flooded, and they discover something horrific-- four people chained in the basement of one of the houses. One of them sets the leader free and is killed for his troubles; the other flees, retreating into insanity for the rest of his days. Fast-forward to the fortieth anniversary of the dam, and Desbaria is putting on a celebration. It's drawn Dan Quarry, a journalist (Michael McKell, of the long-running daytime soap Doctors) who's doing a story on the sunken town, and Teresa Borgia (Raquel Merono, who showed up-- surprise!-- in Dagon), daughter of the last mayor of Marienbad and the first mayor of Desbaria, a plucky news reporter. (For there must always be a plucky news reporter.) Teresa's daughter, Clara (Charlotte Salt, of the upcoming Beowulf), London born and bred, is desperately bored with the small town. Until all hell breaks loose, that is.Read more ›
It begins with two boys, Teo and Luis, who stumble across the flooded remains of an abandoned church. Venturing inside, they find people tied up and in obvious distress, so poor Teo does what anyone might do - release them. Big mistake, as this frees Mordecai Sales (Patrick Gordon, doing his best Julian Beck impression), who is some sort of demonically-powered cultist. Mordecai enjoys getting really intimate with his victims - you could say he's fond of deep kissing, if that deep kiss happens to involve ripping your jaw open and biting your tongue.
It's pretty clear from the beginning that the normal taboos American horror films avoid, like mutilating children, won't hinder Spanish producer Brian Yuzna. And in that regard Beneath Still Waters is eager to shock, be it bizarre orgy scenes, over-the-top demonic worship by priests and nuns, or priests and nuns molesting goats in an orgy scene. American cinema did all this in the 70s; if you see something like this nowadays it's usually played with a wink. Yuzna plays it straight though, which gives the whole film a surreal retro vibe.
Forty years later, the town of Marienbad is celebrating the anniversary of the Desbaria Dam. Thanks to the Dam the town is dry, but Desbaria is forgotten, submerged by the floodwaters and long forgotten. Enter journalist Dan Quarry (Michael McKell) and news reporter Teresa Borgia (Raquel Merono).Read more ›
This movie had some silly gore, but at the same time they were scenes that will stick in my head, so they worked in that regard. Some of the characters were good, others were wooden and silly. The police official for the town looked like Breaking Bad's Heisenberg character and I found that distracting. I was a big fan of the female leads who were easy to look at while playing their parts fine. The visiting guy who got himself into the middle of everything was annoying and I found myself rooting against him, though that would result in destroying the town. Then again, I realized destroying the town would end the movie, and by the last 20 minutes I was all for that too.
There was a twist that seemed to be of the, "hey, look at what we did there, we threw in a twist!" garden variety. I think i liked it though it seemed sorta random. So yeah, overall I enjoyed the creepy vibe, the evil Mordecai Salas, the women in the middle of all this mess, and the storyline idea with the Satanic elements. On the negative, it was clunky, and at times I had no idea what the Hell was going on. A brief topless scene and a rampant orgy that sprung out of nowhere seemed sorta out of place, but hey, these things happen in a horror flick.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Comically horrific! We really enjoyed watching this movie. It will not scare you to death but it is definitely entertaining.Published 17 months ago by bridget
A spiritual power is killing an entire town and is about to go global until the town builds a dam causing a flood to form a river over the cursed town. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Mark J. House
THIS MOVIE WAS NOT WHAT I EXPECTED--A REAL STINKEROO--I DO NOT RECOMMEND THIS DVD-- I'M STILL TRYING TO FIGURE WHY THE FILM COMPANY EVEN MADE IT!!!Published on May 27, 2014 by Carolyn Stanley
great video quality and im a brian yuzna fan but this movie drags and has terrible acting off kilter tonal choices !Published on December 20, 2012 by Daniel Fouts
Director Brian Yuzna's Beneath Still Waters (2005) is a supernatural tale where the various pieces don't quite mesh, but the film does feature some thrills, gore, uneven special... Read morePublished on December 17, 2011 by trebe
This movie had great potential. But... its ends up being a stinker.
The concept is great. In the 1930s the WPA dams a river to create a reservoir. Read more
While nothing to rush out and buy, Brian Yuzna's 2005 film "Beneath Still Waters" is not nearly as bad as the negative comments would indicate. Read morePublished on September 30, 2010 by Only-A-Child