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From Beyond (1986) Review

From Beyond is a 1986 American science fiction horror film directed by Stuart Gordon and starring Jeffrey Combs, Barbara Crampton, Ken Foree, and Ted Sorel. The film is loosely based on the short story “From Beyond” by H. P. Lovecraft.

The film’s plot revolves around a scientist who has invented a machine that stimulates the pineal gland, allowing people to see beyond the physical world into a realm inhabited by monsters. When the scientist is killed, his assistant and a police detective attempt to solve the mystery of his death and find themselves caught up in the same strange world.

From Beyond is a fun and campy horror film that is sure to please fans of H.P. Lovecraft. The film’s special effects are impressively gruesome, and the acting is solid all around. Jeffrey Combs is particularly good as the scientist who unleashes the horrors of the other world.

From Beyond is another 80’s classic that hails from the creative mind of H.P. Lovecraft. Where do i start in laying on the praise for this flick? Well i suppose i could start with the cast. A great cast. We’ve got a supreme performance from Ted Sorel as the twisted sexual deviant Edward Pretorious. He really brings a lot to the character, that smarmy underhanded connivance. His character goes through quite a few changes to say the least and Ted is awesome at every stage. Jeffrey Combs is solid as usual as the main protagonist Crawford Tillinghast, Barbara Crampton looks lovely as ever and also puts in a good show. Let us not forget the legendary Ken Foree as Bubba Brownlee, the copper attached to Katherine to make sure Crawford doesn’t get outta hand. It’s a brilliant cast all round and quite frankly i don’t think From Beyond would be half the movie it is with a weaker line up.

Gore and special effects are superb for the 80’s, up there with the best of them in fact. Pretorius’s transformations look disgustingly realistic and with every new occasion he shows up, they get even more grizzly. AWESOME. Now pacing wise From Beyond starts off strong but at times it can be a little slow but everything we go through is worth it, it is a strong idea the concept of extra-dimensional phenomenon (and one rooted in science fact) and it makes for some good food for thought.

So, From Beyond is undoubtedly one 80’s horror flick that should be on every horror fans ‘to watch’ list (assuming you haven’t already seen it – heck even if ya have) it is in my opinion one of the best H.P. Lovecraft based movies to ever be made and also one of prolific director Stuart Gordon’s best movies. Recommended without reserve.

While the film is not without its flaws, it is a fun and entertaining ride. If you’re a fan of Lovecraft or horror films in general, then From Beyond is definitely worth checking out.


Dr. Edward Pretorius and his assistant, Crawford Tillinghast, have invented a machine that stimulates the pineal gland, allowing people to see beyond the boundaries of normal perception. As they test the machine, they begin to see terrifying creatures that may be lurking just beyond our sight.

As they continue to use the machine, the creatures become more aggressive, and Pretorius becomes increasingly obsessed with them. Tillinghast, meanwhile, is driven mad by the sights he sees and the things he learns about Pretorius.

When Pretorius attempts to use the machine to contact other dimensions, he is pulled into one of them and killed. Tillinghast is taken to an asylum, where he is visited by Dr. Katherine McMichaels, a psychiatrist who is investigating Pretorius’ work.

Tillinghast tells her about the machine and the creatures he saw, and she decides to try it herself. When she does, she is attacked by the creatures and only barely escapes. She decides to destroy the machine, but Tillinghast, now completely under Pretorius’ control, stops her.

The film ends with Tillinghast activating the machine again, and the creatures dragging Pretorius’ body into one of the other dimensions.

Movie Details

Director: Stuart Gordon
Writer: Stuart Gordon
Actors: Jeffrey Combs, Barbara Crampton, Ken Foree
Release Year: 1986