23 July 2014

The Dead Don't Die (1975)
96 min.
Directed by Curtis Harrington.
With George Hamilton, Ray Milland, Linda Cristal, Joan Blondell, Ralph Meeker, Reggie Nalder, Milton Parsons, Yvette Vickers.
One of the few zombie-themed TV horrors, here's an enjoyable period terror piece from director Harrington.

After poor Ralph is sent to the electric chair for a murder he didn't commit, his brother Don Drake (Hamilton) sets out to prove the former's innocence posthumously.

With the aid of dance hall promoter Milland, Don begins an investigation but quickly finds himself drawn into the occult world of a mysterious man named Varrick...a world where the dead rise again to carry out sinister orders. Who is this evil and elusive Varrick and how can he be stopped?

Buoyed by an eerie 1930s atmosphere, this picks up steam as it moves along culminating in a fun showdown in a makeshift meat locker/morgue. Milland and Hamilton both deliver good performances in this nostalgia-tinged effort.

Best scene: Cristal's fiery demise.

Scripted by Robert Bloch.

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