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Friday, December 16, 2011

Zombies of Mora Tau (1957)

I so wanted this one to be a good film.  It has a number of things going for it:  The story line is interesting as dead crewmen from sunken ships come back to life to guard the treasure that is still buried on the sea floor.  Who will try to get the treasure next?  Will the zombies claim another victim?  It sounds great but it never quite gets there and the ending is ridiculously bad as the treasure is returned to the sea and a zombie sea captain "vaporizes" leaving a pile of clothing.  WTF?
Most of the acting is decent enough in Mora Tau.  However, Marjorie Eaton is terrible as Grandmother Peters.  This role really needs to sizzle for this movie to work but Eaton is as stiff and wooden as the zombies onscreen.
The really bad news comes in the form of the "underwater" scenes which look like they were filmed by Ed Wood on a studio lot. Baaaaaaad.  Furthermore, the zombies aren't menacing in the least and no one really explains how they got to be that way.  The unspoken explanation has something to do with voodoo but then this theme is not explored in the movie at all.  They just leave you hanging.
With a little more work this could have actually been a decent little zombie flick along the likes of Val Lewton's I Walked With a Zombie (1943) but it never quite gets there.
For more info check out the episode's entry in IMDB.

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