A young woman is assigned to teach school in a secluded valley whose inhabitants appear stern, secretive and anti-pleasure. Following two children who disappear to play in the woods, she ... See full summary »
I remember watching this when it first aired - even then, I thought it was lame. That doesn't mean it's not fun, however. Poor Dennis Weaver, cast as a milquetoast yet again, plays the middle-class head of a rather dull family who take a little vacation on the beach (hence the title). No sooner are they settled than the trouble begins, with Pa, Ma (Estelle Parsons) and the kids (Susan Dey and Kristofer Tabori) victimized by a group of would-be Hippies who make the kids in "Hot Rods To Hell" and "Outrage" seem like Hell's Angels. They spend too much time playing idiotic "mind games" with the family, who are apparently too terrified (or too stupid) to simply pack up, jump in the car and head home. Oh yes, Papa is a pacifist unlike the son, who thinks he's a coward, but events will bring Dad around. There are no characterizations beyond this. Parsons, who looks frumpy and tired, just whines throughout. Dey looks fetching, but adds little (dramatic) substance and Tabori is simply there to egg Dad on. As for the hippies, they have no motivation at all, let alone credibility. This is very rarely seen these days, but, as bad movies go, it's well worth looking out for, even though it may not sound like it here.And You really haven't lived until you hear Dad Weaver lead his family in a mind-bending rendition of ''I went to the animal fair''(?). Remember,however, a picture is worth a thousand words and "Terror on the Beach" is quite a picture.
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