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Beyond Evil

  • Release Date: 01-08-1981
  • Vipco Catalogue Number: VIP018
  • Director: Herb Freed
  • Writers: Paul Ross, Herb Freed, David Baughn
  • Actors: John Saxon, Lynda Day George, Michael Dante
  • Storyline:
    An architect and his wife moves into a house with a bloody past and a 100 year old ghost, who possesses the wife.

  • Country: USA
  • Language: English
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Beyond death. Beyond pain. Beyond Evil.

Written, produced and directed by the Ohio-born Herb Freed, a former rabbi who crafted over 200 film trailers during the swinging sixties, before trying his hand with AWOL (Absent Without Leave), his first picture, a modest but decidedly dull military drama from 1971

Sharpening his directorial skills a little further, Beyond Evil represented Freed’s third outing as director, a film for which he also co-wrote and produced. Slow-paced but oddly captivating, Beyond Evil was knee deep in Black Magic, and concerns Larry (enigmatically played by Enter the Dragon tough guy John Saxon) and Barbara (Lynda Day George), a pair of newlyweds whom move to a small Hawaiian island, to await the completion of their new home. Upon their arrival, the couple are offered a spooky legend that surrounds the former owners – a tale shrouded in the supernatural, which involves a chilling “pact with the Devil” – before being handed the keys. Perhaps not such an auspicious starting point, but one that is quickly dismissed by the blissful nuptials, whom are just keen to move in...

Before long, the malignant fiery-eyed ‘spirit’ of former occupant Alma Martin (played by Texas-born television star Janice Lynde) pervades their new home, weaving itself through the mansion and possesses Barbara – who soon starts to kill those closest to Larry, including his best friend Del (Michael Dante) who is expelled out of their upstairs balcony in a truly terrifying moment of supernatural horror. With the help of a local witchdoctor, Larry tries to save Barbara – but can the evil spirit be ousted before more innocent lives are lost...

This was VIPCO’s eighteenth release, and devotees of the Christian faith should beware: In true VIPCO-styled fashion, this August 1981 release featured a colourfully striking illustration of Satan – an evil-looking statuette that is featured heavily throughout the film – which may prove to be strangely unsettling to those of a nervous disposition.

Freed’s next picture, the mediocre but hard-hitting high school horror-themed Graduation Day, featured Lynda Day George’s real-life husband, Christopher – in a film that proved to be something of a minor success on tape for its Buckinghamshire-based distributor Iver Film Services.

Meanwhile, back at VIPCO HQ, the company was beginning to carve a niche for itself, as suppliers of video films which would soon be deemed too hot for UK rental shelves; titles that included such controversial – and risqué but undeniably rental-worthy – gems such as Abel Ferrara’s The Driller Killer, Tobe Hooper’s Death Trap and their number one rental smash hit, Lucio Fulci’s Zombie Flesh Eaters.

Written by Administrator Last modified on Sunday, 30 June 2013 18:30

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