DVD Review: The Beast Beneath (2020)

November 7, 2020

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

An earthquake in a small desert town unleashes an ancient beast that then goes on to terrorize said town like a mother fucker.

That’s the premise of the latest from prolific writer/director Dustin Ferguson, The Beast Beneath; a throwback to the creature features you’d find all over network TV in the wake of Jaws.

Now make no mistakes, this is a lower budgeted feature, so straight up you get padding with long credit sequences and some shots that go on for a bit more than they should. Also some of the acting is spotty… but it’s nice to see turns from legendary scream queen Brinke Stevens and Kung-fu flick mainstay Mel Novak on display.

If you are a fan of my column that those types of technical issues don’t mean jack and or shit to your’s cruelly, and I know it doesn’t to a number of you cats n’ creeps as well… what matters to me is: is the story entertaining, is the filmmaker’s heart in the right place, and in the case of a creature feature; how does the monster of the hour fare.

Let’s tackle that first one. The story here is exactly what you would expect, right down to the shifty town mayor (played by the aforementioned Novak), but there are stumbling blocks as the film runs a scant sixty minutes, and that sixty is both unnecessarily extended and features an abrupt ending that doesn’t truly register that it happened at all.

So that’s a few negatives, but that being said, I wholeheartedly believe Ferguson was into what he was doing here; his influences show, and are well represented, he seems to be enjoying himself (as does the cast, with Geovonna Casanova being a standout among the personable assembly).

Also of note; I really fucking loved the monster present here… no CG bullshit; just a batshit insane, fanged, octopus-like beasty presented in full on practical glory. I loved it, and I’m glad it was shown full-on; hell give me more of that sort of thing next time!

Also of note is the funky as all fuck synth theme on display here; a real treat for your eerie earholes.

As for special features on this DVD, you get the film’s trailer, a handful of TV spots, a 3-D TV promo and sequence, host segments from the film’s television premier, behind-the-scenes footage shot by actress Alana Evans, and a photo gallery. Also included is a postcard made to look like a vintage TV Guide ad for the film… I can’t express how much I loved this!

At the end of the day, The Beast Beneath is a fun indie fright flick that has no problems being exactly what it is (and believe me, you’ll know right from frame one if this is your cup of terror tea or not)… I just could have gone for a lil’ more of it!




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