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The Beast Within

The Beast Within (1982) starring Ronny Cox, Bibi Besch, Paul Clemens, Logan Ramsey, Don Gordon

In short,  The Beast Within is a 1980’s horror film that’s a mixture between  The Curse of the Werewolf and any number of Southern Gothic movies. It begins with a newlywed couple (Ronny Cox and Bibi Besch) on their honeymoon.  They have car trouble in the middle of nowhere, in the American South.  Filmed in Raymond, Missouri, for those who care about such things. While the husband goes to find help, the woman is assaulted and raped by an insect-like monster. She conceives a child from the rape and gives birth to seemingly-normal Michael (Paul Clemens). He appears to be a nice, average, handsome young man. Until he turns 17 …

Michael is ill, with what appears to be a pituitary condition.  His parents return to the little town where he was conceived. They’re trying to find information on his biological father. The parents think that it’s a genetic disorder. Soon, it’s obvious that:

The Beast Within (1982) starring Ronny Cox, Bibi Besch, Paul Clemens, Logan Ramsey, Don Gordon
  1. It’s not a genetic disorder. Instead, it’s some kind of evil spirit that’s driving him to commit murders. With a special vendetta against members of one family. In particular, Edwin Curwin (Logan Ramsey) is a target.
  2. That family is covering up the cliched dark secret, that explains the vendetta against them
  3. The cliched relative in a minor position of power — Judge Curwin (Don Gordon) covering up the grisliness  that went on

In short, it’s an interesting idea, but not dreadfully well executed. The Beast Within is not a bad movie, but not a remarkably good one, either. It’s rated R due to the violence, etc. as well — I rate it two stars out of five.

Product Description of  The Beast Within

A teenager is experiencing growing pains of a most shocking kind in this exciting, tense and all-too-real story of a human-into monster transformation.

18-year-old Michael MacCleary (the progeny of his mother’s rape by a swamp beast) is on the verge of becoming a man. And as the inherited evil in his blood gnaws at his soul, Michael must return to the swamp to uncover the terrifying identity of his father: before his nasty natural tendencies force him to feed on the locals! Starring Ronny Cox (Robocop), Bibi Besch (Star Trek II), Paul Clemens (Communion) L.Q. Jones (The Wild Bunch) and R.G. Armstrong (Race With The Devil).

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