Beast of the Yellow Night

08/25/2015 20:48

Film: Beast of the Yellow Night

Year: 1971

Director: Eddie Romero

Writer: Eddie Romero

Starring: John Ashley, Mary Charlotte Wilcox and Leopoldo Salcedo



This film begins in 1946 in a village in Southeast Asia. We see the military being sent out to take care of someone. We see a woman running away from them, but she is shot. We then see there is a man on the run as well, played by John Ashley. He enters a part of the jungle where there is a weird mist. He tries to eat some berries, but they cause him to throw up. Someone begins talking to him and we see it is a snake. The snake becomes Vic Diaz who is Satan. Ashley agrees to become his disciple.

The film then moves to a similar village 11 years into the future. We are at a funeral for someone. We see Diaz come up to where the body is and talks to Ashley. We do not see him though. The film then shifts to a hospital where Ruben Rustia is speaking with Mary Charlotte Wilcox. We learn that her husband was in an industrial accident and has passed away. Rustia is asking if they can give him an autopsy to figure out the cause of death and what happened to him. She agrees, but wants to see him first.

Rustia, Wilcox and the man’s brother, played by Ken Metcalfe go to his room. When they get there, we see that he is alive somehow. Ashley also plays this man. His face is bandaged up, but a nurse removes them. This causes Rustia to have a heart attack and he dies.

Wilcox soon learns that this man is not the same man she married. She likes some of it, but bothered by other parts. We learn that Diaz gave him another body to continue to live as he used to. This film tells us that Ashley was a horrible person. He was a traitor to the United States, he tortured and killed. He decides in this new body to do things the right way and to be a better person. This involves telling Metcalfe that he should be with Wilcox, because he will treat her better. Wilcox doesn’t want this though. She makes love to Ashley, but he can’t seem to connect with her. We do learn that her real husband neglected her to the point where she was ready to leave.

One night Ashley walks toward a church and he gets sick to his stomach. He ends up changing into a horrible monster. A man comes to help him and he is killed for his efforts. Ashley flees.

Two police officers are called in to handle the case, played by Leopoldo Salcedo and Eddie Garcia. They don’t have much to go on at first though.

Wilcox tries to be affectionate with Ashley and this causes him to become the monster again. He kills a woman near his home and he is chased into an alley. In this alley, he kills someone else. He hides in a building where he meets Andres Centenera. Centenera is blind, but knows there is something wrong with Ashley. He can smell the blood on him. Despite this, he allows him to stay the night there.

We learn that Centenera is a former famous thief who did his time in prison. He wants to help Ashley.

Will he be able to control himself from becoming the monster? Or will Diaz continue to control him? Will Centenera or Wilcox be able to help him? Can he be helped? The two officers now have more a description and Ashley is brought to their attention. Will they realize it is him? Can they stop him?

I have to say that what I liked most about this film was Diaz being an overweight Satan and taking advantage of someone like Ashley. We learn that he did horrible things and wants to continue to live due to being selfish. Diaz capitalizes on that. I also think the gore that is used doesn’t look too bad for the era this film was made in and the budget that was used. Wilcox isn’t bad looking either.

There are a lot of problems with this film for me. I don’t think it is realistic for Ashley to want to change in the next body he gets after the way he was before. I also don’t know if I missed it, but this change would make sense if he was in multiple bodies and finally tired of it. I get that the body he takes over had changes made to it from the accident, but Wilcox doesn’t even question how he looks. I also question how Salcedo would know that this Ashley from the 40s. He is too set on that it is a man that would be much older or dead. I also felt that the film doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, especially the ending. Ashley goes from being an unkillable monster to loving a man so much that it ruins his power. Does make some sense, but it is outrageous with what the military does leading up to this. I also don’t understand what causes him to change and why does he change in the first place?

I would not recommend this unless you like low budget, bad, foreign horror films. The acting is subpar, the concept isn’t bad, but the story is. Wilcox isn’t bad to look at, especially during her nude scene. Some of things that happen do not make a lot of sense, at least to me. There are a lot of things that go unexplained and the film never fully fleshes out to a solid, coherent piece. This one is lacking a lot of answers. There are much better films out there that are worth your time.


My Rating: 3 out of 10