Beyond the Door II (1977)
"Schock" (original title)

R  |   |  Horror  |  12 August 1977 (Italy)
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A couple is terrorized in their new house haunted by the vengeful ghost of the woman's former husband who possesses her young son.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Complete credited cast:
Daria Nicolodi ...
Dora Baldini
John Steiner ...
Bruno Baldini
David Colin Jr. ...
Ivan Rassimov ...
Dr. Aldo Spidini


A couple is terrorized in their new house haunted by the vengeful ghost of the woman's former husband who possesses her young son.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A new look at the face of evil. See more »




R | See all certifications »





Release Date:

12 August 1977 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Beyond the Door II  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Sound System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film was released in the USA as "Beyond the Door II", although it has no connection with "Beyond the Door" (1974). See more »


A black cord is visible pulling a wooden object toward Dora. See more »


Featured in A Head for Horror: Lamberto Bava on 'Macabre' (2001) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Italian horror done almost perfect
5 May 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Sometimes all you need in horror is a sense of mood in a place. Other times, a warped state of mind can help a great deal by a filmmaker's point of view to get a viewer tapped in. In Shock, we do know for certain that a mother, Dora, her cute little son Marco, and her second husband Bruno, are at a new house they just bought. But what we don't know for certain, perhaps not fully even until the very end, what is really taking the shape of the horror, and that's the key to Mario Bava's success here (actually his last film, quite a feat for any time in his career). We're lead to believe that this is most likely a ghost story - at least at first. It seems straightforward enough: the boy keeps getting weird, sneaking on his mother (even stealing her underwear) and acts generally creepy, and soon get some supernatural mojo with a doll made up of his mom and a swing that can control his stepfather's flight plan as he pilots a plane.

There is that aspect, and Bava does get some good mileage out of the mannerisms and kind eyes of the child actor Colin Jr (his voice on the other hand leaves much more to be desired). But then sometime else happens after a little while: we get to follow Dora more closely, specifically when she has nightmares or can't really tell between what is real and what is dark fantasy. She has a dream where she's trapped in her bedroom, and a box-cutter moves by itself, hovering and threatening her at every turn. She also sees a giant brick wall and screams in agony, for reasons that won't become clear until much later. Again, could still all be the ghost going on - who we also learn soon after could allegedly be her first husband, who died from suicide as a junkie.

But the fact that Dora was a former mental patient, and spent some time in an asylum and got some shock treatments, calls into question her reliability as a character. Her husband doesn't believe her, but who would in this situation (and, naturally, in this kind of semi-ghost sub-horror genre)? What we see is a split between what is expected, and Bava has a gay-old-time showing us imagery that is just downright disturbing. Some of it early on borders on being just wrong (the boy making sight of her mother as she sleeps, perhaps possessed or directed by his dead father... or is he?), and then other times things just get strange, deliberately. It is Italian Horror, after all, but done without the tasteless style of a Fulci. This is more... I don't know if classy is the word, but Bava knows his camera and knows how to create eerie suspense out of nothing, so it's kind of a bridge between being grindhouse and being true Gothic terror.

And sure, some parts the dialog is weak and the actress Nicoldi shrieks so high that you can hear Fay Wray telling her to knock it off. But Bava gets us interested in the plight of this character, what will happen to her as, naturally, she stays in the house because her husband doesn't want to leave (at least not just yet), and what sinister act the husband-cum-son will do next as well. There's are scenes where horror creeps up on a viewer; watch as Dora keeps hearing her boy call out for her from... somewhere, and can't find him, but sees something wicked in the piano room (at one point, I should add, it laughs), and the ambiguity of this scene, among others, drives the tension and madness. While not flawless, it's the work of a master. 9.5/10

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