April 29, 2016

From Beyond (1986)


Pros
  • Those classic 80s sci-fi special effects (practical effects being superior to CGI in the horror genre)
  • Another movie that just reeks of the 80s which I typically enjoy
  • I loved how the movie dives right into the story in the opening seconds of the film
  • Sucking out people's brains through their eye socket!
  • "Humans are such easy prey"
  • Heavily Lovecraftian

Cons
  • All around the movie can be summed up as too campy for its own good
  • Barbara Crampton's constantly screaming throughout the later half of the movie
  • The acting certainly is nothing to brag about here, again something that feels way over the top
  • The movie doesn't spend enough time in the other dimension, it's like the movie is constantly teasing us
  • Should have tried a bit harder to dip into the horror genre to help avoid being this campy
  • The story feels paper thin, or in general lacking more depth in order to make the movie interesting
  • A very lackluster ending that doesn't come close to being satisfying (where does she get a bomb from?)

Score: 4/10

It's unfortunate, but From Beyond can't help but be compared to the superior Re-Animator. Both films are directed by Stuart Gordon, star the same two leads, and are influenced by Lovecraft, so it's hard not to make comparisons. While on paper they seem similar, the movies themselves are quite different in terms of quality, unfortunately. From Beyond seemed not to try hard enough to create some type of structure to keep the story afloat, whereas Re-Animator perfectly meshed the horror/comedy genres and created some fantastic scenes with sound structure. Basically, From Beyond felt too silly and campy for its own good, you can attribute that to both the direction and the acting. The slim and ick-factor are both here, but the typical charm and enjoyment factors aren't.

The overall idea is creepy in itself (unknown dimensions), but the execution of the story seemed to be lacking. The opening moments reveal the protagonist, but then the following 80 minutes nothing really comes from it. The story seemed to go absolutely nowhere, and in fact I could hardly tell you what it was trying to accomplish. And, of course, there were all those sexual undertones, where they necessary to the story, who knows? Maybe I failed to grasps the film's overall message of sexual exploration and all that, but what was given was scarce and more importantly lame.

Like I said, it's hard not to compare this film to the vastly superior Re-Animator. While the special effects here are fantastic (I love the 80s gore effects), they can't save From Beyond from being dull and joyless. Not a disastrous movie but the movie doesn't even close to reaching the heights of other 80s sci-fi classics.

Rating System


1

Atrocious

2

Awful

3

Bad

4

Not Good

5

Average

6

Decent

7

Good

8

Great

9

Excellent

10

Masterpiece

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