HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Sauvage
Watermelon Man
Wandering Earth, The
Good Fairy, The
Killer Party
Holmes & Watson
Monster in the Closet
Sand, The
Glass
My Brilliant Career
Knife for the Ladies, A
Man in the Attic
Destroyer
Fillmore
Bumblebee
No Kidding
Honkytonk Man
Woman in the Window, The
Shed of the Dead
Dead Easy
Tucked
Widows
Last Movie Star, The
Death Game
Juliet, Naked
November
Arcadia
Sugar Hill
House with the Clock in Its Walls, The
Devil Thumbs a Ride, The
Suspiria
Secret People
Spy Who Dumped Me, The
Beautiful Stranger
House That Jack Built, The
Undercover
White Chamber
R.P.M.
Summer of 84
On Secret Service
   
 
Newest Articles
Outer Space and Outta Sight: Gonks Go Beat on Blu-ray
Tucked: The Derren Nesbitt Interview
Locomotion Pictures: The Best of British Transport Films on Blu-ray
Roman Scandals: Extreme Visions from Ancient Rome
Spider-Wrong and Spider-Right: The Dragon's Challenge and Into the Spider-Verse
Monster Dog: Cujo on Blu-ray
For Christ's Sake: Jesus Christ Superstar and The Last Temptation of Christ
Not In Front of the Children: Inappropriate Kids Movies
Deeper into Ozploitation: Next of Kin and Fair Game
Between the Wars: Babylon Berlin Series 1&2 on DVD
Hard Luck Story: Detour on Blu-ray
Oh, What Happened to You? The Likely Lads on Blu-ray
Killer Apps: The Rise of the Evil 60s Supercomputers
How 1970s Can You Get? Cliff Richard in Take Me High vs Never Too Young to Rock
A Perfect Engine, An Eating Machine: The Jaws Series
   
 
  Dead Men Walk Zucco To 'EmBuy this film here.
Year: 1943
Director: Sam Newfield
Stars: George Zucco, Mary Carlisle, Nedrick Young, Dwight Frye, Fern Emmett, Robert Strange, Hal Price, Sam Flint
Genre: Horror
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Doctor Elwyn Clayton (George Zucco) has died, and the only person really mourning him is his twin brother Lloyd (also George Zucco), who is a doctor too. Only Elwyn was the black sheep of the family thanks to his fascination with the Dark Arts which led him to investigate witchcraft and the occult, what lies beyond this realm occupying his time, which is why his funeral is interrupted by local busybody Kate (Fern Emmett) accusing him of murder as he lies in his coffin. But what Lloyd and his niece Gayle (Mary Carlisle) do not know is that Elwyn may be making a return visit to their town - as a vampire!

Bram Stoker's novel Dracula effectively set the lore of vampires in stone, and though ever after there have been variations on his themes, they all owe a debt to his classic work. As seen here, where Zucco played a bloodsucker not quite like the Count, but nevertheless patterned after him; Elwyn was not some caped Eastern European, he was a posh Brit who had somehow found himself in Middle America along with his brother (unless they were supposed to be playing American and couldn't be bothered doing the accent), yet the style and his post-mortem powers were the same, leaving the tell-tale bite marks on the necks of his victims.

Chief among those victims was his niece, or at least you had to assume Gayle was his niece, since she was Lloyd's niece, and there is no mention of her being his daughter. Carlisle, who died in 2018 at age 104, decided to call it a day on her acting career after this effort, and little wonder as she had been in musicals with Bing Crosby in the previous decade, but now it was the nineteen-forties and she was stuck in a Poverty Row material like this, from the most identifiable low budget Hollywood studio aside from Monogram, P.R.C. As if that were not enough, her role here required her to lie about looking wan for more or less the duration.

Meanwhile Zucco had more of a plum role, or plum roles, as a starring part he would not have enjoyed in the higher budget items he would also be found in, moving between headlining cheapo horrors and supporting roles in more prestigious pictures with urbane ease. Thanks to a blatant lie in Kenneth Anger's book Hollywood Babylon II, the rumour that has dogged him ever since he passed away is he became convinced the Elder Gods of H.P. Lovecraft infamy had begun to plague him in his later years and he went stark staring mad; nothing could be further from the truth, though in an interesting twist his Elwyn here would have made a pretty respectable Lovecraftian anti-hero what with his immersion in the arcane knowledge mankind should not be meddling with, though Howard was never one for vampirism.

Also in the cast and of note were Nedrick Young, the actor turned screenwriter who here was the love interest for Carlisle where you had to say as an actor he was a fine screenwriter (though blacklisted in the fifties, he did pen hit The Defiant Ones for Stanley Kramer). More appealing for horror fans was the presence of Dwight Frye as Elwyn's Renfield-like assistant Zolar, bringing his accustomed craziness to a role he could have played in his sleep by now. Frye lamented the fact he was typecast in Hollywood where what he really wanted to do was play comedy, and he would not live long enough to see that dream realised, passing away the year after this was made, but he was such a memorable performer in chillers that his fans were pleased he was able to offer such dedication to the maniacal sidekick contribution. Otherwise, this was painfully creaky, though did have a decent fiery finale with Zucco v Zucco, nobody's idea of a classic, but for addicts of this material, irresistible. Music by Leo Erdody.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 503 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Rachel Franke
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
  Derrick Smith
Paul Shrimpton
Darren Jones
George White
   

 

Last Updated: