The Beast France 1974 - Friends of Walerian Borowczyk
Walerian Borowczyk, Filmography, Biography of Walerian Borowczyk, film director,
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The Beast
France 1974

Feature films
About This Project

France 1975, “La bête” (original title), 94 min, colour, French, Italian, English dir Walerian Borowczyk sc Walerian Borowczyk cam Bernard Daillencourt, Marcel Grignon ed Walerian Borowczyk mus Domenico Scarlatti cast Lisbeth Hummel, Elisabeth Kaza, Sirpa Lane, Pierre Benedetti, Guy Tréjan prod Anatole Dauman pc Argos Film sales Argos Films

Bestial dreams interrupt the plans of a venal French aristocrat (Guy Tréjan) attempts to save his crumbling mansion by marrying off his deformed son to a horny American heiress (Lisbeth Hummel). Originally intended as an episode of Immoral Tales (to be sandwiched between Thérèse Philosophe and Erzsébet Bathory), Borowczyk reworked The Beast as a dream sequence within a Buñuelian farce. Drawing on the legends surrounding the beast of Gévaudan, not to mention Prosper Mérimée’s Lokis, Freud’s Wolf Man and Podkowiński’s Szał uniesień (Frenzy of Ecstasy, 1893), The Beast is a black comedy hell bent on trampling all pretentions of ‘good taste’. A big influence on Neil Jordan’s The Company of Wolves, The Beast is Borowczyk at his most outrageous. Listening to Scarlatti will never quite be the same again…