Fleete (Phil Hall) is, let's face it, an idiot - so when he after a
party at some cabin in the woods desecrates some altar of a mysterious
cult and is suddenly attacked and injured by a silver leper, even his
friends think he's only gotten what was coming to him. But then Fleete
starts behaving weirdly, as if he was somehow possessed - a situation that
comes to a head when he attacks and wounds one of the other party guests.
All the guests are soon evacuated while host Strickland (Dick Boland), his
wife Sheri (Sheri Lynn) and their best friend Debbie (Debbie Rochon) stay
behind with Fleete - now all tied up - and try to figure out what to do.
Always knowing that the silver leper is still out there and might attack
Debbie and Strickland soon come to the conclusion that Fleete
wasn't infected by the leper but cursed, and thus they try to perform an
exorcism on him - that shows muted effect, but doesn't actually work,
because, heck, they are no exorcists and hardly know any appropriate
rites. Ultimately, the two come to the conclusion they have to capture the
leper and force him to lift the curse.
But will they catch the leper?
And how will they force/torture him to cooperate? And what marks will it
leave on their conscience? And will there be a happy ending for Fleete?
on a short story by Rudyard Kipling (and the story's age deliberately
shows time and again in the movie) - with the plot transplanted from India
to rural USA though -, Mark of the Beast is a truly enjoyable
old-fashioned horror/monster movie, that, not only for budgetary reasons,
limits itself to only a few locations and a handful of characters, and
puts its emphasis on atmosphere and suspense rather than sudden shocks and
excessive violence (thought there's plenty of both in the finale). Add to
this some really interesting characters and a solid ensemble cast, and
you've got yourself something ... pretty good, actually.