What’s amazing about our beloved genre is that you don’t have to look far to find a great film festival, convention or event celebrating horror and cult cinema, both of the present and the past. At this point, there are dozens of top-notch, beautifully curated festivals all over the world; each shining the spotlight on the wild, weird and zaniness of great movies in their own way. But no one does it quite like Beyondfest.
Now entering their 4th year, the Hollywood based film fest not only programs some of the most well-known and loved cult movies (TAXI DRIVER, BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA), they always attract high caliber guests (Kurt Russell, Nicholas Cage, James Gunn), and debut a ton of highly anticipated new films. (THE ACCOUNTANT, ARRIVAL, THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS) What I personally love about Beyondfest is the way they combine our love of both film and music for some of their events. Because of the festival, we’ve been fortunate enough to see re-scores of films such as PIECES and THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE. We’ve also gotten concert/movie double bills with Goblin and Fabio Frizzi. So, this year, they offered something equally as cool, but also totally unique. A live re-score of Lucio Fulci’s classic THE BEYOND with Fabio Frizzi and his band!
But first, to really get the crowd pumped, as well as prove that this event is for horror lovers of all tastes & varieties, our surprise before THE BEYOND was getting to watch the premiere episode of ASH VS EVIL DEAD season 2 on the big screen with Ash himself, Bruce Campbell in attendance! Bruce did a quick intro in his trademark Bruce way, and then we got to enjoy our taste of Season 2 with a full audience. I already had the chance to preview the first 2 episodes in advance, and if you were already a fan of the first season, you’ll no doubt love the radical direction they’re taking this new season in. Seeing it with an audience that laughed out loud at all the best bits was a treat in of itself.
Then Fabio Frizzi and his band took the stage below the screen to provide us with a truly original version of THE BEYOND. Grindhouse Releasings‘ Bob Murawski had already put out a stellar, fully restored version of THE BEYOND on Blu-Ray. Here, he’s provided them with a high def version of the film that has the score elements removed. So on screen, we were seeing a version of THE BEYOND that was pristine, but also only had the dialogue and sound effects, which enabled the live band to truly marry the two in a beautiful, organic way.
The problem with some live re-scores is if the sound elements aren’t separated, the live band can sometimes overpower the dialogue of the movie. But in this case, it was the rare time I got to see something like this where volume levels were reasonable, so that if you hadn’t seen THE BEYOND before, you wouldn’t miss anything.
Also of note is that Frizzi wrote a new theme for this version, which is being called “THE BEYOND: THE COMPOSER’S CUT.” His original cues do play prominently into the feature, but there’s one catchy, melancholy new theme that Frizzi & company have weaved into the film’s score that’s not only a gorgeous addition, but magically feels like it’s been there the whole time.
I have to say, I’ve always loved THE BEYOND. It’s one of those trippy movies that visualizes what I like to refer to as “nightmare logic” perfectly. And yet, this was my favorite viewing of the film ever. Perhaps it was the combination of visuals and live score that brought it to life in a way I’d never experienced before. Or the fact that the entire night played as a loving tribute to the gone-but-never forgotten maestro Lucio Fulci. Following the re-score, Frizzi played a few more musical numbers and then we were treated to a screening of CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD in 35mm, which provided the metaphoric icing on the cake.
So, when can you see or hear Frizzi’s new re-score for THE BEYOND? That’s a good question! As of right now, there are a few more U.S. tour dates booked for this version of THE BEYOND live. Hit up the Frizzi 2 Frizzi Facebook page to see if it’s coming to a city near you. Otherwise, I have no doubt that an inevitable vinyl release of this new music for THE BEYOND will be announced shortly. I also noticed several cameras set up documenting this show (as well as last year’s full-on concert) by the crew at Grindhouse Releasing. I’m just speculating here, but hopefully they’re planning to include all this footage with one of their future releases. Until then, we’ll just have to wait or pray for more Frizzi shows!
Listen to the Shock Waves crew discussing this concert on episode 20 embedded below!