The Beast Must Die
This film is a detective story-- in which you are the detective. The question is not "Who is the murderer?"-- But "Who is the werewolf?" After all the clues have been shown-- You will get a chance to give your answer. Watch for The Werewolf Break.—The opening narration
And that's essentially the gist of it. Rich hunter Tom Newcliffe invites several people to his mansion, the reason being that he desires to hunt for a new, more dangerous game: a werewolf. And he knows that one of his guests is one.
Starring Calvin Lockhart, the film was released in the 1974 to cash in the Blaxploitation craze. It is based on the novel There Shall Be No Darkness by James Blish.
- Acquitted Too Late: Caroline is first one to transform into a werewolf after the Werewolf Break, but it then tuns out that she was bitten the real werewolf.
- Alliterative Name: The pianist Jan Jarmokowski.
- Answer Cut:
Paul: (Looks out of the window) "A full moon! Shame that nobody thought to order-"
Tom: (Enters the room) "Wolfbane?"
- An Axe to Grind: The person who is the werewolf tries to kill Tom with a hatchet.
- Billing Displacement: Peter Cushing get the top billing over Calvin Lockhart in the video releases.
- Bloody Handprint: Can be seen in Bennington's room when he is found dead.
- Car Chase: Short one ensues when Jan tries to escape from Newcliffe's manor.
- Chair Reveal: Used when Tom finds Pavel's corpse.
- Covers Always Lie: Along with the billing, Cushing also hogs the cover, due to his horror image status.
- Driven to Suicide: After killing the werewolf, Necliffe kills himself so that he won't turn into one.
- Driving Question: Who is the werewolf?
- Egomaniac Hunter: Tom Newcliffe.
- Eye Scream: Pavel's corpse has one of its eyes gouged out.
- Fake-Out Opening; The film opens with Newcliffe being chased around with a helicopter and men with guns. Turns out he is just testing his new security system.
- Foreshadowing: "Tom, what if the werewolf turns out to be me?" "Pow!"
- Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!: Panicking Davina gets slapped.
- Hollywood Darkness
- I Am a Humanitarian: Paul ate a piece human flesh when he was still a doctor.
- Mercy Kill: Tom kills his dog after it suffers a fatal wound from the werewolf.
- Our Werewolves Are Different: There's a lot of discussion about if silver affects them or not. The answer is somewhere in between.
- Red Herring Mole: Paul Foot
- The Reveal: And the werewolf is: Jan the pianist.
- Sensor Suspense: Used when Tom is hunting the werewolf on the first night.
- Smart People Play Chess: Dr. Lundgren and the diplomat Bennington play a game of chess.
- Staking the Loved One: Tom is forced to shoot his wife Caroline when she turns into a werewolf.
- Super Window Jump: The werewolf jumps through a window to kill Pavel.
- Teacher-Student Romance: How Jan and Davina became a couple.
- This Was His True Form
- Title Drop:
Tom: "Tonight is my last chance, the last night of the full moon. And I warn you both; tonight, the beast must die, and will."