Saturday, 13 August 2011

From Beyond The Grave

The portmanteau or anthology film is a perfect format for horror. The idea, which is to create a film using interlocking but separate stories, had been around since the earliest days of cinema, but it was successfully revived for the horror genre in 1965 with ‘Dr Terror’s House Of Horrors’, which was a big enough success to provoke a slew of similar films up until the early eighties.

‘From Beyond The Grave’ is a 1974 film from Amicus studios. Amicus are the horror portmanteau studio, and, for my money, ‘From Beyond…’ is the best of the lot, an absolute classic. No other anthology film has such strong individual stories, such good performances, and such a genuinely unsettling atmosphere of foreboding and doom.

The four individual stories are linked by Temptations Ltd, an antique shop run by Peter Cushing (sporting an uncharacteristic Yorkshire accent). His customers are a dishonest lot, switching prices, negotiating unreasonable prices and, in one case, stealing, but they soon learn the error of their ways as soon as they leave the shop and their story begins.

It’s a good enough film to split it up into component parts, so that’s what we’ll do this weekend, although, of course, you realise I did this all one damp, dull night weeks ago and I’m currently at a pool party having an amazing time.


  1. Massively looking forward to your component part break-down.
    This is indeed the best of the bunch, and each tale is as strong as the smell of rancid death in the face.

    "naughty, shouldn't have done that .. "

    Get back to your pool-side cocktails, It's after midnight here, and the fire is lit, so I'm going to watch this again full of whiskey.

  2. While you're sipping cocktails at your exclusive pool party, why not suggest to your friends that they hold a seance... Where's the harm in that?