Movie Name: Snowbeast
Studio: Douglas Cramer Productions
Release Date(s): April 28, 1977
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
A ski resort town has a problem. Skiers are disappearing and the attacker seems to be inhuman. Resort owner Carrie Rill (Sylvia Sidney) and her grandson Tony (Robert Logan) have brought in former gold medalist skier Gar Seberg (Bo Svenson) and his wife Ellen (Yvette Mimieux) under false pretentions in the hopes that Gar can find and stop the beast. As the beast gets more and more aggressive, killing the creature is the only option.
Directed by Herb Wallerstein, Snowbeast was written by Psycho script scribe Joseph Stefano. The made-for-TV horror film first aired on NBC. The movie is in public domain and readily available online.
The ’70s were the heyday of the made-for-TV horror movie genre. The movies were sometimes well received and often have gained cult followings in the years since their release. While movies like Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark and Salem’s Lot live on as TV horror icons, Snowbeast is more infamous than celebrated.
Snowbeast is rather dull. The movie has very little plot. The sasquatch/yeti/“Snowbeast” attacks and then the characters go to hunt it. The hunting involves a lot of “Snowbeast” perspective followed by a lot of skiing: kill and repeat. It tries to do a bit of a Jaws thing involving the resort’s fear of losing clients, but it isn’t enough to bolster the story.
The cast likewise isn’t great. Bo Svenson plays the skier who no longer skis because of his fears of lost glory. His wife Ellen is played by Yvette Mimieux (who just happens to be a reporter who has conveniently researched sasquatch) and she is torn between her past love of Tony played by Robert Logan…all the characters involved are dull. I wish that the movie had done more with Sylvia Sidney who is entertaining as the resort owner.
The Snowbeast isn’t that bad when you see it…but it is scene minimally due to the fact it probably wouldn’t look great if it had lots of cameratime. The monster pretty much looks like a hornless Wampa from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. We are subjected to first-person “Snowbeast” view a lot…and it feels like filler for the movie. The movie is also often shot day-for-night and it is pretty obvious.
Snowbeast is a bad movie, but it is quick and entertaining. If you like movies about cryptozoological creatures, it is a definite must. It is easy to find for free or a minimal cost and fans of bad horror should look for it. The movie was remade in 2011 starring John Schneider and Danielle Churhran.
Buy it on Amazon.com or stream it now: