Review: Beyond The Gates

"In this love letter to VCR boardgames, Barbara Crampton brings the creep factor in a role we're not used to seeing her in."
By Adam Holtzapfel

This week I had a chance to check out the late 2016 release Beyond The Gates. In this film directed by Jackson Stewart, written by Stewart along with Stephen Scarlata, and clocking in at just over an hour and twenty minutes we get a fun ride.



Beyond The Gates tells the story of two estranged brothers. Gordy (Graham Skipper) and Johnny (Chase Williamson). The film opens in the early 90’s with the grand opening of the family video store. We then fast forward to the present day where their father has gone missing. Gordy & Johnny are tasked with packing up the store (which is any tapeheads wet dream).








Gordy arrives at his father’s house where he is staying and we meet his girlfriend Margot (Brea Grant). As the story continues we see why Gordy left town. He also stumbles across the key to his father’s office at the store. 



Being curious as ever he and John decide to explore the office. There they find the VCR game (yes kids these were real things) Beyond The Gates…what happens next you need to see to believe.








Overall this is a love letter for those of use that grew up during the VHS boom and to games like Nightmare and Doorways to Adventure. Barbara Crampton ups the creep factor as Evelyn, the setting, dialogue, and the fx work great for this. There’s also some good gore that will make any genre fan grin ear to ear. If this would have come out in the late 80s/early 90s this would have done for VCR games what Brainscan tried to do for PC games. This is going to be a film that I can see anyone watching year round and including on their 31 days of October list.


(Images taken from Google)