05th Aug2021

‘The Beast Beneath’ DVD Review

by Phil Wheat

Stars: Brinke Stevens, Mel Novak, D.T. Carney, Eric Prochnau, Alana Evans, Sheri Davis, Jennifer Nangle, Raymond Vinsik Williams, Geovonna Casanova, Ken May, Shawn C. Phillips | Written and Directed by Dustin Ferguson

Writer and director Dustin Ferguson (Zombi VIII: Urban Decay) is an incredibly prolific filmmaker with 110 directorial credits (so far) on IMDb, churning out dozens of films in a year be it under his name or his “Dark Infinity” moniker – which is the name under which he directed The Beast Beneath. This film also features a couple of now-regular performers that Ferguson works with: scream queen Brinke Stevens and Game of Death‘s Mel Novak.

The Beast Beneath sees an earthquake some 20 miles from San Diego awaken a prehistoric beast that starts to feed on the locals, with only the Sheriff ((D.T. Carney), scientist Charlene Brinkeman (Brinke Stevens) and her brother Aaron (Eric Prochnau) willing to stop it. Meanwhile, in a nod to Jaws, the small town mayor, played by Mel Novak, tries to cover things up to avoid a panic and stop the park – a money-making tourist trap – being closed. There’s also an unneeded sub-plot about Aaron, his wife Cheryl (Sheri Davis) and their best friend, played by Jennifer Nangle (Ugly Sweater Party, For Jennifer), with whom Aaron is having an affair.

There’s plenty of fodder for the titular beast to feast on in the film too – including porn star Alana Evans, who also appears in a special feature on the DVD; indie horror regular Mike Ferguson, who gets munched on as punishment for peeing on the beast. Hell even director Dustin Ferguson even feeds himself to the monster!

Yet for all that people-eating, The Beast Beneath still feels like its short on action. In fact the film is blatantly padded out with a long title sequence, protracted images of (what I presume to be) Californian flora and fauna. Then there’s a bizarre scene involving YouTube’s Shawn C. Phillips (aka Coolduder) in a self-filmed segment (which includes a lengthy pan around his movie room, the shelves carefully laden with films he’s been involved with) watching another of Dustin Ferguson’s monster movies, Angry Asian Murder Hornets on TV before strolling out into the Californian woods looking for hi dog, only to be eaten by the titular beast beneath!

Before you know it though, The Beast Beneath has eaten its last victim, Jennifer Nangle’s character Jennifer (way to go originality), who live streamed her own death at the hands – or should that be mouth – of the monster. Unable to avoid the situation, the Sheriff then blows the beast up in the bluntest ending to a film I’ve ever seen. Oh, and like all good – and bad – horrors, the titular beast pops on to the screen to let us know he’s still alive!

Then let’s roll the 8-minute credits sequence… I say that specifically as The Beast Beneath TOTAL running time is 59m 40s, not even an hour and we get both a long opening AND closing credits, making this more of a short film than a feature. Especially when you consider the amount of padding the film has too!

Obviously this is micro-budget filmmaking, as are most of Ferguson’s seemingly self-financed projects so, as usual, you enjoyment will undoubtedly be based on a tolerance for such fare.

DVD Special Features:

  • Trailer
  • TV Spots
  • Behind the Scenes with Alana
  • Photos
  • 3D Scene & more!

The Beast Beneath is out now on made-on-demand DVD from SCS Entertainment. Check out the Facebook page for more info.


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