The 80’s was a wonderfully weird decade.
The birth of personal tech to the likes of the Walkman, the CD, calculator watches and VCRs.
A short lived fad in the latter part of the 80s was Video Board Games, where a mix of grainy video instructions, live acted would prompt you to move your characters around the game board.
The Shudder exclusive horror film Beyond the Gates takes this several steps further… in to the depths of hell.
Two estranged brothers have the dutiful task of clearing out their father’s retro video store after his mysterious disappearance some months back.
Gordon (Graham Skipper) had moved from the small town and made his life in the city, while his younger brother, John (Chase Williamson) remained in the town and kicked around with some of the local undesirables.
Gordon and his girlfriend stay in the family home while the clean-up process is underway – and it’s where he finds the missing key to his father’s office.
As the two brothers slowly begin to bond all over again after years apart, the two enter the office for the first time. There, in the VCR, is a tape that goes with a board game called ‘Beyond the Gates’.
The two brothers and Gordon’s partner settle down to an evening of retro-fuelled VHS board gaming, only to discover real quick that the game is real and really will take the trio ‘Beyond the Gates’ and closer to the truth of what happened to their father.
A surprise film low budget film. I wasn’t expecting much to be honest. A B-Grade horror flick at best – but my expectations were exceeded beyond an amateur thrill.
Beyond the Gate is a whimsical film that doesn’t take itself too seriously, a must watch for those that lived during the 80’s (and played board games like Nightmare), or for those that enjoy a satisfying chill out horror.
Year: 2016 (streaming 2019 - 2020)
Running Time: 84 MIN
Director: Jackson Stewart
Starring: Barbara Crampton, Brea Grant, Chase Williamson, Graham Skipper
Production Studio: Destroy All Entertainment, Easy Open Productions, Lodger Films, Thunder Warrior Productions
Distributor: IFC Films, AMC Network (Shudder)