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The Nature of the Beast
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Reviews & Ratings for
The Nature of the Beast More at IMDbPro »

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17 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

Overlooked and Under-appreciated

Author: fookin from Oakland, CA
26 September 2000

Possibly the only people who saw this movie are the ones who posted user comments, which is too bad. I wouldnt say it was one of the best movies ever made, and I wouldnt call it a piece of c**p either. This movie seemed to be made for people who appreciate second banana actors, and it was done pretty well in my opinion. Anyone who has stayed up late at night watching cable should be familiar with Eric and Lance. Lance is one of my favorite actors, and this was one of those movies that stand out in my mind when I think of his work. The ending was great. I dont want to give anything away, but...that pretty much made the movie for me. I think if this movie went mainstream with bigger named actors...like..I dont know, Brad Pitt and Edward Norton, this would have been a hit. Instead, its doomed to be one of those movies that you see when you want to see something else, and its too bad, because as it is, it should be one that you want to watch. After checking for DVD availability for over a year now, I've come to the conclusion that this movie will never get a fair chance. Thats too bad, because its a good movie, and most people wont even know it was ever made.

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12 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

Tense, Well-Performed, Yet Underrated Thriller

7/10
Author: jcanettis from Athens, Greece
5 August 2005

Although underrated, "The Nature of The Beast" is a very good thriller. Its tense and bleak atmosphere keeps you in a nail-biting state throughout the film, with its best part being its end, when a brilliant plot twist really brings everything upside down.

The story begins with Jack (Henriksen), a typical, middle-class executive on a business travel, who bumps onto a murder scene; the policemen in charge advise him to be careful on his way, as there is a serial killer in the area hitch-hiking for his next victim. Keeping this advice in mind, he avoids somebody he encounters who asks for a lift; unfortunately, he is not so lucky, as he soon finds the guy in a diner some kilometers ahead. The guy loses no time to introduce himself as Andrian (Roberts), and he soon becomes a thorn on Jack's side, who in turn realizes that it will be very difficult to get away from this menace...

Featuring two great performances, the movie is virtually a two-man show: Both Roberts and Henriksen are really great in their roles, and it would not be an exaggeration to say that the film's value is based on them. The other characters have short appearances which simply supplement the duo.

A film worth having a look. 7/10.

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11 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

A second helping will be mandatory

9/10
Author: Rogue-32 from L A.
4 June 2002

Lance Henriksen and Eric Roberts cannot be any more effective than they are in this extremely perverse little movie, which must be seen by anyone who enjoys a serious cinematic mind-f#@k now and again. And Victor Salva's writing holds up upon the second viewing, which will be mandatory.

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12 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

An underrated masterpiece...

10/10
Author: Mackan-8 from Sala, Sweden
22 February 2000

I must confess something about this movie... I really think this is one of the best ever made. The first time I saw it I didn't know what it was about or who appeared in it. When Lance Henriksen and especially Eric Roberts were in the lead I felt the title and the combination of these two character actors must be quite good. Now after seeing it I can most surely say that it wasn't good.. it was totally DYNAMITE!

Eric Roberts is a great actor. Even if he sometimes takes on a movie part too much... I love some of his work. Especially "The Specialist", "In Cold Blood", "Runaway Train" and this one. His worst is "Rude Awakening". There is something in his acting that can't be seen anywhere else. His Adrian is by far one of his best performances.

Lance Henriksen has much in common with Roberts. He also has his own acting way and all who have seen him in the great show "Millennium" knows what I'm talking about.

Both Roberts and Henriksen should be bigger stars in Hollywood.

The great story with its oddities and chilling atmosphere have made me seen it about four-five times already. I think I will look at it again tonight, because I know I will be in a good mood afterwards. I feel "Nature of the Beast" is my own movie. I found it before others and made my point of view before any judgment was typed down by anyone. Still it's very unknown, but this movie has proven that you can and will find unknown movies that is much better than many of the big productions Hollywood give us.

I specially love the ending, even though it's a masterpiece all the way through.

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8 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

"I'm a man with a secret too myself."

8/10
Author: johnny-08 from Rijeka, Croatia
19 June 2007

I like movies in which I don't know what's happening until the end. This is one of them. Very underrated, something like "Secret Window" with Johnny Depp. Story is good and it's about Jack who's driving through Nevada and soon he picks Adrian, a mysterious man who don't want to go away from him even when Jack is trying to lose him. This story will keep you tense right till' the end. Only two important characters are Jack and Adrian and they are played by Lance Henriksen and Eric Roberts. Both of them are superb in their roles and they are keeping this movie interesting to watch. I would like to congratulate Mr.Roberts on this role because this is one of his greatest performances.Good plot and excellent actors are here, so all you need to do is watch this movie. You won't regret. I didn't.

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10 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

The wide open desert is a lonely and dangerous place especially with a serial killer on the loose

8/10
Author: sol from Brooklyn NY USA
18 March 2004

+There May be Spoilers+ There's a serial killer on the loose striking motorists on the desert highway between Nevada and California. In this violent setting two men meet up as if it were by fate. One a paper goods salesman from Las Vegas Jack Powell, Lance Henriksen, and one a drifter Adrian, Eric Roberts, from God's only knows where and you sense right away that one is the murderer but which one is he?

Suspenseful movie about murder and madness that goes the whole nine yards and even more in shocking the living hell out of the audience. The scene towards the end of the movie between Jack Powell and Sheriff Gordon, Brion James and his deputy Little David Brewer, Tom Tarntini, outside Powell's cabin is so electrifying charged and nail biting that it had me want to turn off the VCR because my nerves just about had it from the almost unbearable tension watching it.

There is admittedly some uneven scenes in the film but overall they don't take anything away from the jolts in it that in some cases leaves you paralyzed from shock. The ending is a bit confusing but it's just for that very reason that make it so effective. Nothing in the movie seems to be what you think that it is even the murderer.

Solid performances by the two top stars Lance Henriksen & Eric Roberts who despite the very capable supporting cast carry the movie all by themselves.

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7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Brilliant

10/10
Author: Laurian Diaconescu from Romania
23 June 2006

This one sharp and solid thriller which ended up underrated for some reason. Movies which manage to create tension through solid dialogs and great performances are real gems these days. The story looks simple: Jack tries to avoid Adrian, a hitcher, after being warned by the police about a serial killer running loose. However, the two men meet again in a Cafe, and they become inseparable, since they know each other's secrets. One of them is the serial killer, while the other managed to stole a big amount of money from a Vegas Casion. This movie manages to keep you from yawning or fast-forwarding by using smart dialogs and brilliant twists. And just when you start thinking you can anticipate the ending, it hits you on the head really hard. The entire movie is based on the performances of Lance Henriksen and Eric Roberts, which prove once again that they are underrated for no reason. The chemistry between them is always there, but in a creepy way. The soundtrack fits the story perfectly, and the depiction is brilliant. If you haven't seen it, don't rent it, BUY it. You'll end up watching it at least three times and then again, at irregular intervals. Hopefully they will do justice to this movie one day, and really promote it, like they should have done from the day it came out. Conclusion: one of the smartest, memorable thrillers you'll ever see.

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7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

great script, great acting!

8/10
Author: Joppy77 from Athens, Greece
27 August 2005

We often forget the script is what it's all about. Throw in a couple of Hollwood-veterans and some good shooting and you get a real cracker. The script is so well though-out you never imagine the ending. It's amazing! It's one of these rare cases where you get an American film (a TV-production no less!!) with a totally unpredictable conclusion. The acting is top-notch and beats anything out there, very powerful. The scenes are often mystical and nocturnal, the only qualm I would have is that there was plenty of space for extra creative camera-work, just to heighten the suspense even further. If a remake of this was done by a more revolutionary director (e.g. Michael Mann), this could definitely account for a new Hollywood blockbuster (and no doubt keeping the two main actors as well).

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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Criminally underrated serial killer thriller!

Author: Infofreak from Perth, Australia
25 May 2002

I first watched 'Nature Of The Beast' about six years ago and was impressed by it. A second viewing yesterday confirmed my opinion, though my enjoyment was slightly lessened as the twist ending was obviously no longer a surprise. I can't see why this movie hasn't received more attention. Perhaps because the two leads Eric Roberts ('Runaway Train', 'The Immortals') and Lance Henriksen ('Near Dark', 'The Quick And The Dead'), both great favourites of mine, have made way too many stupid action direct-to-video movies and people just think this one is more of the same. It isn't, it's much better than that. Roberts and Henriksen both excel in this tense and unpredictable road movie. I don't want to give much away as the less you know before you watch it the more you will get out of it. Sure it's a cheesy b-grade thriller, but it's a superior example of the genre. Director Victor Salva went on to make 'Jeepers Creepers', a movie I haven't seen at the time of writing this. Hopefully the success of that movie will create some interest in his previous efforts, especially this one.

Oh, and if you're a Brion James ('Blade Runner', 'Crimewave') fan like myself, be warned, he doesn't appear until towards the end, and only for one scene. Despite third billing it's nothing more than a cameo.

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

a hidden gem for fans of thrillers with surprise endings.

9/10
Author: keyser_soze4321 from Perth, Australia
22 May 2005

'Nature of the Beast', written and directed by Victor Salva, is a hidden gem for fans of thrillers with surprise twist endings. You may or may not predict the plot twist that makes you rethink the entire movie, but you will enjoy the performances by Lance Henriksen and Eric Roberts. Victor Salva also does a good job with the directing and the story. Like most thrillers it maybe a little slow for action fans, a little shallow in character development for drama fans, and a little too serious for comedy fans. But if like a good thriller with suspense, intrigue, an underlying truth hidden from the viewer, and good acting and directing, then I recommend you see 'Nature of the Beast.'

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