Saturday, October 13, 2012

Beyond The Door (1974)


Synopsis taken from IMDb
Juliet Mills plays a young pregnant woman in San Francisco who is going to have the devil's baby during her strange possession. Richard Johnson shows up to help her...but what does he really want?

Beyond The Door is an Italian-American horror film also know as "Chi Sei". It's most commonly found in the UK under the title "The Devil Within Her", and in this version you get 15 minutes of extra footage not shown in theaters. Luckily for me, I got to see it under that presentation. So it was no holds barred.

Due to the film being about a possessed woman, the film got labeled as a Exorcist rip-off. Warner Brothers even filed a lawsuit against this film for copyright infringement. The lawsuit failed. However, Beyond The Door is held accountable for paving the path for several other Exorcist rip-offs.

If there's one thing that scares me above all others it's possession. Possession scares the hell out of me, it's the one thing that (if done right) will make me cringe and even have trouble sleeping. I'm certain that part of this is due to me being traumatized by The Exorcist as a child. When I was about 5 or 6 years old I snuck out into the living room where my parents were watching The Exorcist, and I watched some parts of it. And I kid you not, I didn't sleep at night for the whole summer. I'd stay up until 7 or 8 o'clock in the morning or until it was daylight and then I'd sleep.
Since then I've been terrified of possession, especially since I came from a religious family.

I actually have never heard of this movie until a couple of weeks ago. I was looking for some posters online and stumbled into some posters for movies I haven't seen, and when I saw the poster for this film I knew I had to watch it. If the poster creeps me out, I'm down to give it a watch. Then I got the idea to watch the trailer for this film and within 20 seconds I was creep'd out. I knew this movie meant to scare you, they weren't going for cheese or easy going, they were going for the balls. Luckily Netflix delivered the movie soon after and I was able to torture myself with one more possession movie.

Now as I mentioned, this movie is said to have ripped-off a few scenes from The Exorcist, but I liked this movie and I liked the way it was done. Yeah, some scenes were close to what happened in the movie, like the head turning scene, but it was done in it's own way. They took the idea and did their own way of doing it, it wasn't a direct rip-off. Some similarities, but not a rip-off. They borrowed a few tools from The Exorcist to do this movie but the story was all new.

The scene where she's throwing up didn't really look green to me, it looked more black. But supposedly it was green pea soup although in The Exorcist the puke was alot lighter in color. So either it was the lighting making the throw up look dark or it wasn't green pea soup.

The thing that I think scares me the most about possession movies is the voice. That raspy, sick sounding voice. That cackle of a laugh. You can hear it whenever you think of this film or any other possession movie with a good sound voice to scare the hell out of you. In this movie the line that stands out in that voice is one Jessica repeats several times; "Whooooo aaare youuuuu?"

Jessica looks creepy as hell, she looks sweaty, dirty and in need of a shower as well as a good brushing of her teeth. She's taunting and malevolent, and she scared me pretty good. Something about women being possessed always makes it scarier. For some reason possessed men just don't do anything for scares or entertainment.

I liked how we saw the progression of her possession. She was a good, loving mother of two and then she starts to become angry and aggressive. We see her take it out on her family and they all know something funny's happening to their mommy. And her husband doesn't know what to do, but to me, he acted a little light. If it were my wife and mother of my children acting that way I would have gone for the best help possible right away. I wouldn't have waited around in a stupor for things to progress.

When she becomes full-on possessed is when the movie starts to really pick up and get scary. She's a vile woman when she's possessed, as most possessed people are I guess. Then her ex-boyfriend and Satan worshiper it makes the plot twist a little, questioning what was going to happen.

The climax is satisfying and the ending was pretty good. Very unsettling. I didn't see the final shot coming. Totally shocked me. I'm a fan of this movie and will be looking to own it. Exorcist rip-off or not, I didn't mind this film at all, and it scared me.

This film 2 sequels but neither of them are official sequels. They're other films marketed under the name "Beyond The Door" title to cash in on the name. Mario Bava's Italian horror film, Shock, was put under the title Beyond The Door 2 (1979). Beyond The Door 3 (1989) was shot in Serbia and has Ovidio G. Assonitis is credited as a producer. But neither sequels have any ties into the first Beyond The Door, the sequels are stand alone films that are added to the first film as sequels. They have no connection to each other.



  1. Call me a punk but after this one I'm avoiding possession movies fro here on out lol.
    I can take any vampire, werewolf, movie monster or hockey mask wearing maniac any day of the week but possession scares the life outta me! And it's gross.

  2. Hahaha! Amen Tare, we'd make quite the team with being horrified of possessed women.

    1. I'd much rather face Freddy Kruger, thanks lol!


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