(US - 1985)
Written and directed by Telly Savalas. Cast: Telly Savalas, Diana Muldaur, Laura Johnson, Marvin Laird, Bob Basso, Walter Brooke, Barney Phillips, Douglas Dirkson, Tony Burton, Biff Elliot, Rita Marie Carr, Jason Ronard, Lilyan Chauvin, Toni Lawrence, Susan Myers, Kathy Bendett, Paul Gale, Lee Terri, Debra Feuer, Melissa Prophet, Denise DuBarry, Priscilla Barnes. (PG, 88 mins)
After over a decade of being a jobbing character actor in the US and in Europe (and getting a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for 1962's BIRDMAN OF ALCATRAZ), Telly Savalas became a pop culture phenemenon with the success of the CBS cop series KOJAK in 1973. KOJAK ran for five seasons, during which time Savalas was everywhere, appearing on talk shows, awards shows, variety shows, CIRCUS OF THE STARS, Dean Martin's celebrity roasts, you name it. Kojak's lollipops became synonymous with Savalas, and the detective's "Who loves ya, baby?" was one of the most iconic catchphrases of its day. Savalas had the clout to do whatever he wanted and nobody stopped him. He released two albums, 1974's Telly and 1976's Who Loves Ya, Baby? and had a minor hit single with a novelty spoken word cover of Bread's "If," and, a few years later, a cover of Don Williams' "Some Broken Hearts Never Mend" topped the charts in Switzerland. He wanted to direct a few episodes of KOJAK, so CBS let him direct a few episodes of KOJAK. He had a lavish lifestyle, gambled all over the world, traveled with an entourage, and with his shaved head and macho demeanor, he became an unlikely sex symbol and one of the most instantly recognizable celebrities on the planet. That image made him the perfect pitchman for Player's Club in the '80s and '90s. It wasn't just a role: for a brief window in time, Telly Savalas was the ultimate player.
THE SPELL). But Mati's life soon begins to unravel after a heated conversation over treatment philosophies with med student Leslie Valentine (future DALLAS and FALCON CREST co-star Laura Johnson). He's called up to the roof of the hospital where a stranger (Paul Gale) takes a dive off the building right in front of him, and shortly after, he starts seeing things that aren't there, and his disorientation escalates to the point where he breaks into Leslie's apartment and is almost shot by her roommate Ann (Rita Marie Carr). He begins to think Leslie is trying to drive him insane, especially when he sees a framed photo on her wall showing her with the roof jumper. He keeps telling the police that Leslie witnessed the suicide but no one can recall seeing her. Bizarre hallucinations and cryptic clues ("You're the courier of love...but it's not that simple!") haunt him, until nothing makes sense anymore. That goes for Dr. Mati as well as the viewer.
|Savalas' 1974 debut album Telly.
|BEYOND REASON airing on CBS
late-night on June 24, 1986
|Incredibly misleading two-page ad in Variety desperately
trying to pass BEYOND REASON off as a supernatural horror film