Director – Brian Yuzna (The Dentist, Faust)
Starring – Jeffrey Combs (The Attic Expeditions, House on Haunted Hill), Jason Barry (Sons of Anarchy, F.A.R.T. the Movie), and Elsa Pataky (Giallo, Snakes on a Plane)
Release Date – 2003
Rating – 3/5
Blu Release – 4.5/5
I’m one of the few horror fans that are always open minded about sequels, prequels, and remakes. When I hear about a film I already like is getting the treatment I genuinely get excited. I like how most take a story I already know and enjoy and take it in a new direction. Sadly, a good portion of the time these films fall flat or fail to gain any steam. One of my favorite horror films is Re-Animator and the sequel Bride of Re-Animator. Both are outstanding in their own right and essential for any horror fan.
In 2003 director and producer Brian Yuzna turned the story of Herbert West into a trilogy with Beyond Re-Animator. After I checked out the double feature released by Umbrella Entertainment I put my sights on the Vestron Video release of the film with new special features. Though I did like the artwork for Umbrella’s release I have to say the quality of Vestron’s is a little better.
**Spoiler Alert**The film picks up several years after the events of the second film. The dead broke free from the local morgue and killed several people. Dan Cain rolled evidence on West putting him behind bars. Before West was arrested he was found near the scene of the murder when a young woman was murdered by one of his experiments while her younger brother watched. Now he has grown up and is a doctor who gets a job at the prison where West is held so he can work with West on his special serum. **Spoiler Alert**
I didn’t know what to expect when I first watched Beyond Re-Animator. I knew it wouldn’t be the same as the first two films considering so much time had passes and Bruce Abbott was no longer part of the equation. The movie wasn’t bad but it just wasn’t on the same level as the previous two installments. It left some room for improvement and the story just didn’t hold your attention like the other films.
The acting in this one is solid. Jeffrey Combs once again shows why he was cast as West. His portrayal of West is fucking phenomenal. He is emotionless and calculated which reads very well on camera. The supporting cast is solid as well but these characters are just not as fun as the characters from the previous films.
The story for this one would have worked well if it didn’t pick up years after the first two films. It does move slower than the first two films but it still delivers more of the West saga which is all we can ask for at this point.
Finally, the film still offers some pretty gruesome scenes. We get some fun death scenes and even more of the fantastic practical effects that we are accustomed to. There is several segments where we see some very bad CGI effects. Overall, Beyond Re-Animator may not be on the same level as the previous films but it still delivers the fun we look for in a Herbert West film. Check it out.
Production Art Gallery
Vintage EPK Featurette
Dr. Re-Animator – Move Your Dead Bones Video