The Beast Within

Posted: October 1, 2010 in Scifi
Tags: , , ,

The year was 1982. I just started high school as a sophomore but most of my friends from junior high 127x were off in different high schools. Luckily, we still remained great friends and hung out quite often in my old apartment where I used to live in Parkchester. As teens, horror movies were the best things to happen to us guys who were trying to date girls. There is no need to go into details but you know why. Well, one of the theaters in Parkchester was called The Circle. On one such occasions, we all went to see The Beast Within.

You can read below the premise:

While driving through Mississippi on their honeymoon, Caroline and Eli MacCleary (Bibi Besch and Ronny Cox) are stranded on a deserted road when their car is stuck in the mud. Eli is forced to walk several miles down the road to a service station they stopped at earlier to get a tow. While he is gone, Caroline is attacked and raped by a mysterious creature.

Seventeen years later, their son Michael (who was conceived as a result of Caroline’s rape) has become gravely ill, and the doctors have no idea what is causing the sickness, only that a pituitary gland has gone out of control. Theorizing that the sickness might be genetic, Eli and Caroline finally confront the past and return to the small town where she was attacked to hopefully discover some information about the man who assaulted her. The local townspeople are reluctant to help, with both the newspaper editor and the town judge brushing aside their questions. But then Eli and Caroline hear a story about a local man who was murdered 17 years earlier, his body partially eaten and his house almost burned down.

Meanwhile Michael has escaped from the hospital and returned to the same town, unbeknownst to his parents. His personality undergoes a frightening transformation, and he quickly begins to attack and kill specific people in the community, including the paper editor and the local mortician, both of whom were related to each other.

After several more revelations, including the discovery of a swamp filled with bodies whose bones show signs of having been gnawed on, Caroline and Eli finally discover the terrible truth about the creature that attacked her those many years ago. And what’s worse, it appears that the creature is about to be reborn through Michael, and its murderous actions are the direct consequence of a carefully concealed secret.


One of the things that the trailers and newspaper ads promised was this incredible transformation sequence in the last 30 minutes of the film. (In actuality, it is last 20 minutes before the good stuff really happens.) That alone was reason to see something I had never seen before. Check out the trailer to see the hype. Looks very Grindhouse material indeed.

So, what I take from these great memories is one major thing that happened before the movie even began. One of my friends, Michelle, who I had known since grade school and junior high, was singing to the music playing over head.

When you love someone it’s natural, not demanding
And that’s one thing I’m proud to say I found in you
I’m so glad we reached an understanding
Now I know my heart is safe with you, hoo…
So now my love to you, baby, I surrender

Get ready tonight
Gonna make this a night to remember
Get ready (Oh, baby) tonight
Gonna make this a night to remember

While all my other friends were goofing around, I sat watching her sing this Shalamar song. I couldn’t hear anything else but her. Yes, I had a crush on her but now, at that moment, I was in love with her. And it is because of her, my love of horror movies manifested just like my love of scifi movies. However, without going into too much details, we stopped being friends. I moved to Miami to get away from NY and my old life. However, I never forgot her. I did find her again back in 2008 and saw her again in NY at the NYCC. She is a talented illustrator today and wish that I could relive those special times again with her. But as a man in my place, I can not. With my fears of death and middle age-dom in full effect, I needed to something to help with this anxiety. All I can do is pay homage to her via this special Halloween/Horror themed month for The Monster Horror Show.

Below is a pic, I took over her at the Trump Towers in Manhattan. I was a photography major and she was my model for many of my projects for school.

Thank you Mimi for being a part of my life. You mean the world to me… still.


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