‘Forgotten by nature… invaded by modern man… half human… half fish!’
Beyond Atlantis is a 1973 fantasy adventure film about a band of adventurers that invade a remote island to grab huge pearls. The islanders are just as determined to keep their sacred treasure. Trouble ensues.
Directed and co-produced by Eddie Romero from a screenplay written by Charles Eric Johnson [as Charles Johnson] based on a story by Stephanie Rothman. Also produced by John Ashley. Executive produced by Charles S. Swartz.
The American Dimension Pictures production stars Patrick Wayne, John Ashley, Leigh Christian, Sid Haig, Lenore Stevens, George Nader and Vic Diaz.
Producer John Ashley admitted that the movie was meant to be a ripoff of The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, but he had high hopes for it because he liked the script so much.
At one stage, Ashley was going to direct it, but “the production end of it got so spread out that I felt that for me to attempt to produce, direct and appear in it would be really difficult.”
Ashley said that the original intention was for the lead characters to discover the people living underwater and “for the most part they were going to be topless”. However, Larry Woolner, the head of Dimension Pictures, thought that they had the chance to make a slightly more ambitious film. They wanted to cast Wayne, and one of his requirements was that the film had a PG rating. They increased the budget and cast another relatively well-known name, George Nader.
” …fans of bad cinema might enjoy the last 20 minutes or so, which include an underwater catfight, a poorly staged shootout, and the ridiculously long funeral sequence for a key character. One can actually feel the filmmakers straining to fill the screen with any old thing that might flesh out the running time of this insipid schlockfest.” Every 70s Movie
” …the cast is fun (Patrick Wayne, Sid Haig, Eddie Garcia, Vic Diaz and George Nader), the women are attractive, and the underwater photography is excellent. However, the script is too unfocused to really build up any steam, which is a real problem in the final part of the movie.” Fantastic Move Musings and Ramblings
” …it actually dares to bring up the serious subject that these people – even the anthropologist – may be doing irreparable harm to this society just by being there. But instead of further exploring this or anything else unexpected that comes up, the movie constantly chooses to almost immediately backtrack and go back to the humdrum.” The Unknown Movies
“If you do manage to stay awake, you’ll be treated to a decent piranha attack, a not-bad catfight, and a pretty cool explosion in the finale. The best thing about the film is that it features an incredible cast. Sid Haig is excellent as the slimy pimp-turned-entrepreneur. Whatever spark of life the flick has is due to his lively performance.” The Video Vacuum
Vic Mathias [Patrick Wayne]: “Of all the dumb stunts! Telling a broad is like blasting it over a loudspeaker.”
The Mate [Eddie Garcia]: “Something’s fishy. Looks like they split when we came.”
Nereus [George Nader]: “I can no longer protect you. You must mate!”
Cast and characters:
Patrick Wayne … Vic Mathias
John Ashley … Logan
Leigh Christian … Syrene
Sid Haig … East Eddie
Lenore Stevens … Kathy Vernon
George Nader … Nereus
Vic Diaz … Manuel
Andres Centenera …
Eddie Garcia … The Mate
Kenneth J. Warren
The film did not do well financially, something that John Ashley chiefly attributed to the PG rating. “Had we done it a little harder it probably would have done better”, he commented in retrospect. “At least we’d have had a picture that was a little more exploitable.” He also thought that the extensive underwater footage slowed down the action, saying, “It’s gorgeous. But watching it is like watching slow motion.”
The music accompanying the fight scene in the water at 1 hour 21mins, is the same music played in the opening sequence for the British ITV News at Ten television programme.
Full free movie on YouTube [1080p HD]: