Plot: What’s it about?
As is the case sometimes with movies, the storyline of this film is simple, yet difficult to summarize without making it seem like an awful movie. So I will do my best to make this as concise as possible, and allow you to explore it first person when you pick up this release. After some fishermen have been exploring the islands just south of the Philippines, they finally stumble upon something amazing. It seems as though these fishermen have discovered an entire civilization of unusual beings, who have strange, pearlized eyes. This new breed of creature is much like a human in terms of looks, but these beings can survive under water for long periods of time, and live on the bottom of the waters. But these beings have some problems, which leads them to seek outside help to ensure the survival of their species. You see, these beings need outsiders to mate with, in order to keep the cycle of life going. And as such, they begin to capture fishermen for just those needs. It seems like there is much to learn about this new species, so the chase begins to seek them out and discover exactly what the deal is with these beings.
I was drawn to this film by the offbeat nature of the storyline, so when this disc arrived I was eager to give it a spin. While I was excited about the film itself, I was concerned with how the transfer would be, since I seen some reviews that claimed it was poor. I’ve now spent some time with the disc, and I am pleased to say I am satisfied with this release. I’ll delve into the disc’s video and audio a little later, but I will say I thought the presentation was adequate. As for the film, I am more than happy to add this to my collection aside other cult classics, as it certainly deserves a place there. I’m not sure if anyone outside of low budget/offbeat cinema will like this release, but anyone who follows similar films will want to take a look. This is a rather low budget offering, so the effects aren’t always terrific, but the movie is a blast to watch, especially with friends or any other group. The acting is decent, the women are hot, and there’s even cockfighting, what more can you want, really? This isn’t for everyone, but if you’re a lover of unusual cinema, I recommend you give this movie a chance.
This film was directed by Eddie Romero, whose resume is loaded with cult classics, as well as some of my favorites. Romero might not have delved much into serious cinema, but his films are still a load of fun to watch, even now. Many will pass them by, since several of them hinge on exploitation or female sexuality, but if you’re a fan of offbeat films, this guy is one you can trust. Whether you’re looking for horror films like Brides Of Blood or The Mad Doctor Of Blood Island, or you want some feisty females on your screen like in Ebony Ivory & Jade, this man’s resume has whatever you’re looking for. Other Romero films include Twilight People, Whiteforce, Black Momma White Momma, and Beast Of The Yellow Night. The acting in this film is about what you’d expect, it’s decent for this film but wouldn’t stand up in a serious film. Some of the appearing talent includes Patrick Wayne (Deep Cover, Young Guns), Lenore Stevens (Bonnie’s Kids), Eddie Garcia (Woman Hunt, Curse of the Vampires), George Nader (House Of 1,000 Dolls), and Vic Diaz (Caged Heat II) as the lovable Manuel The Barracuda.
Video: How does it look?
Beyond Atlantis is presented in a full frame transfer, which seems to be the original aspect ratio, since the framing seems correct and no image is lost. This isn’t the best looking transfer ever, but given the low budget origins of the film, I think this is an adequate visual presentation. The main flaw seems to be the presence of compression errors, which do appear often, but aren’t distracting. In truth, unless you’re looking for them, I doubt you’d notice them. The reds and other brighter hues come across well here, with no bleeding or smearing, and flesh tones look sharp as well. The contrast is a mixed bad at times, with some scenes looking excellent and other a little on the muddled side. Like I said, this isn’t a perfect transfer, but it is a fine visual offering.
Audio: How does it sound?
As with most mono tracks, this one is less than impressive at times, but it does provide an adequate audio experience. I mean, any mono track is limited from the start, but this one is better than average. The usual hiss that goes along with the mono format is minimal, and the effects and music come across well. The dialogue has a minor metallic sound to it, but it’s not that distracting. Overall, a decent audio track, which does the job and little more.
Supplements: What are the extras?
You’ll find the trailer and talent files for Beyond Atlantis, as well as bonus trailers for several other VCI releases.