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  Beyond the Door 3 The Runaway Train Came Down The Track And She Blew
Year: 1989
Director: Jeff Kwitny
Stars: Mary Kohnert, Bo Svenson, Victoria Zinny, Savina Gersak, Sarah Conway Ciminera, William Geiger, Alex Vitale, Ron Williams, Renee Rancourt, Jeremy Sanchez, Igor Pervic, Susan Zelouf, Tania Alexander, Mario Novelli, Olga Poznatov
Genre: Horror, TrashBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Beverly Putnic (Mary Kohnert) is a Californian student whose class have been arranged to visit Serbia as part of a field trip. They are told by their tutor that they will meet a Professor (Bo Svenson) there who will be their guide, and it all seems above board, but Beverly can’t help but have some reservations: she is bullied a little by the class and while she will be glad to get away from her overbearing mother (Victoria Zinny) she has always been bothered by an elaborate birthmark on her stomach that appears to have some significance. Could her trip clear up all the mysteries she has had about her life?

You think people make a fuss about virginity in reality, you ain't seen nothing till you have seen the chaos over Beverly's virginity in Beyond the Door 3, hastily retitled by its producer to bring in spurious links to the Beyond the Door of a decade and a half before, and the Mario Bava horror Shock that was retitled in some places. Your alarm bells may be ringing when the token black guy student is named Richard Aretha (!) but that will leave you ill-prepared for the confounding insanity that proceeds in this example of the dying days of the Italian exploitation boom that had lasted a good few decades to this point.

The horrors from this era, the end of the nineteen-eighties, basically, had exhausted the rip-off culture that had proven such fertile ground for their predecessors, which meant that frequently even by Italian standards the plots and effects were totally nutty, and Beyond the Door 3 was no exception. It had a Satanic (or possibly pagan - what's the difference, right, kids?) cult at its heart who were hoping to bring back the Antichrist or someone similar to the world through the vessel of Beverly, but first they had to get her over to Serbia where her ancestors had come from, and the Professor was only too keen to instigate the mayhem.

Svenson was the biggest star here, so naturally they could only afford him for the beginning and ending of the movie, though his struggles with the Serbian accent may have made that a blessing in disguise. After some shenanigans where the class are sent to an isolated village and the locals try to burn them to death - apart from Beverly, who is given some sleep-inducing soup - the token black guy is the initial casualty and the others run away and hitch a ride on a passing train. Apart from one couple who don't quite make it onboard, though they will end up being run over by said train while out in a boat on a lake. You read that right, for in this instalment, it was less a rip-off of The Exorcist and more in the line of the possessed transport genre.

Yes, the steam locomotive is possessed and sets about murdering the students as well as anyone else who gets in its way. Simple, you might think, just stay out of its way, but ah, it's not that simple for the train keeps zooming off the tracks via some dinky model work and chasing its way around the East European countryside. Though it does always return to the tracks. The dwindling students do their best to stop it, but it's a runaway train, which has occasional side effects as making their faces fall off or chopping them in two when they try to disembark. Quite what the point of this was is a mystery, the cultists had Beverly where they wanted her in the first fifteen minutes, so all the railway business was utterly superfluous, aside from one thing: the Saint she meets playing a flute that sounds like a synthesiser and has designs on that much coveted virginity. Absolutely ridiculous from start to finish it may have been, but you grudgingly admitted you had been entertained, if laughter counts as a success in the entertainment world. Music by Carlo Maria Cordio.

[Available on Arrow Player. Click here to join the Arrow Player website - there's a free trial available.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


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