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The Beast Must Die (1974)

PG | | Horror, Mystery | April 1974 (USA)
Eight people have been invited to an island estate for the weekend. One of them is a werewolf. Can you guess which one?

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Tom Newcliffe
...
Dr. Lundgren
Marlene Clark ...
Caroline Newcliffe
...
Bennington
Anton Diffring ...
Pavel
Ciaran Madden ...
Davina
...
Paul Foote
...
Jan
Sam Mansary ...
Butler (as Sam Mansaray)
Andrew Lodge ...
Pilot
Carl Bohen ...
1st Hunter (as Carl Bohun)
...
2nd Hunter
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Storyline

Tom Newcliffe, a rich businessman and expert hunter summons six guests to his huge country estate which he has rigged up with video cameras and a high-tech security system. He tells them and his surprised wife that they are all to stay over a weekend and that all of them will be kept on the estate during that weekend. For each guest, dead bodies have followed in their wake and the way that the dead have been murdered means that one of the guest is a werewolf and Tom has summoned his guests here to discover who it is and to hunt it down... The film has a clip at the beginning asking people in the audience to try to identify the werewolf and near the end there is a 30-second "Werewolf Break" for the audience to think over the evidence... Written by Lee Horton <Leeh@tcp.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

One of these eight people will turn into a werewolf. Can you guess who it is when we stop the film for the WEREWOLF BREAK? See it ... solve it ... but don't tell!

Genres:

Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

April 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Black Werewolf  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the unforeseen challenges of casting a black actor was that it caused problems lighting the numerous day-for-night sequences, a cost-cutting method where nighttime scenes were shot in the day with the addition of special filters to make it appear that it was filmed at night. See more »

Goofs

Truly awful use of "day for night" shots makes it painfully obvious that the "night" shots were done during the day. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Christopher Lundgren: Your King is in check
Arthur Bennington: But not mate. The game's hardly begun yet.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Directing the Beast (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Moonlight Sonata
(uncredited)
Music by Ludwig van Beethoven
Arranged by Douglas Gamley
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Very fun werewolf movie
17 September 2005 | by (Minnesota) – See all my reviews

One of the good things about the AMC channel is the later you watch it, the weirder the movies get. This one came on at about 1:30 in the morning, and as soon as the creepy narration announced "This is a detective story... where YOU are the detective," I knew I was in for something cool. The narration is followed by an offbeat opening where a black guy (dressed in all black) is running through the woods being chased by a bunch of military types, against a jazz soundtrack. Turns out he's testing out his new security system, and sure enough, there's no way to avoid getting caught on these premises.

After the weird opening, the movie settles down into a pretty straightforward plot. It's really a combination of 'The Most Dangerous Game' and 'Ten Little Indians' (the "guess the culprit" gimmick is practically stolen from the latter movie). A wealthy hunter has gathered a group of guests, one of whom is a werewolf, in order to hunt the ultimate game. But finding out who the werewolf is turns out to be trickier than expected...

The cast is actually quite impressive, and odds are you'll be less interested in figuring out who the werewolf is than figuring out where you've seen all these people before (I'm still racking my brain on Anton Diffring). Of course, every movie like this has at least one unintentionally funny part, and in this one it's Peter Cushing's Dr. Lundgren, the Werewolf Expert. Cushing is a fine actor, but he almost becomes a running joke here, because every time someone asks him about werewolves he goes off on this long spiel describing werewolves in scientific detail that must be heard to be believed. Thanks to this movie, I now know that lycanthropy is caused by a defect in the lymphatic system, and that silver can't harm a werewolf unless there's pollen in the air (?), etc.

This a B-movie, for sure, but a pretty good one. It's well done and suspenseful, and it will keep you interested until the very end. Very much worth watching. 8/10 stars.


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