This success for writer/director, Terry West, Flesh for the Beast, is a surprising accomplishment for any low budget film, even that outside the horror genre. West’s script writing, interesting storyline, good casting, and marvelous direction of acting talent is largely responsible but anytime a succubus delivers well double-entendre, first class seductive technique, with an unambiguous flair for irony… not just once and not just by one succubus…well, that’s some class.
Of course this leads to some gut-wrenching of a different sort than acting delivery (now West has got this reviewer doing it) and horror film this most certainly becomes. As the gypsy fortuneteller divines, the magic involved is indeed “old” if not somewhat linked to legends like those of Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Myths (a pendant vigorously sought somewhat indicates this.) Although the succubus, pentagram and other trappings are of purely the more traditional Satanic variety.
Besides its storyline being very good, Flesh for the Beast, almost seems in anticipation of the real TV trend that was to follow its making where crews of dweebs and nerds (largely) would descend on audiences replacing the boredom of sit coms with a newly found one (even more tedious boredom,) taking a delightful vengeance upon it. Yes, ghost hunting in the real TV sense has not passed out of vogue fast enough already. But then that was once said about the theatrics (and histrionics) of scripted wrestling. We may see “haunting” bridged into new territory. Hope this film doesn’t give promoters any ideas. Good supplies of entrails are limited, you know.
Sorry about the digression. Back to the film, two leads actually exist, that of the sinister, presumably anal, John Stoker (well casted Sergio Jones) and that of prescient psychic researcher, Erin Cooper (lovely Jennifer Litsch.) Both roles and those of the supporting cast are performed skillfully and professionally, but the interpretation Jones gives his is special. As the film progresses the viewer will find Stoker eclipsing in evil the very succubi with whom he traffics.
Building for a delicious (but inevitable ending) with a tacit surprise not so “inevitable”.
Gory and sometimes slightly overdone special effects, graphic sex, nudity and a clear potential to sell a new line of silk-screened T-shirts, Flesh for the Beast, fulfills well the expectations aroused by its title. Obviously not for children.