Welcome, children of the night! This Blog is for fans of vintage horror films as well as those who are just beginning to discover the joy of these classic movies. I'd love to hear from you!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Plague of the Zombies (1966)

With Plague of the Zombies, Hammer Horror presents what I believe was their only venture into zombie territory with great results.  While it takes a while for the undead to appear on-screen, once they do, it's a visual feast for the eyes.  Director John Gilling [The Mummy's Shroud, The Flesh and the Fiends] uses every trick at his disposal to make his zombies pop on screen.  With the help of make up artist Roy Ashton, Gilling give us zombies that are one step closer to the unrelenting terror of George Romero's Night of the Living Dead (1968) and one step away from their black magic ancestors. This is a bit of a surprise since the plot involves Haitian voodoo and blood rituals as its context.  Kudos to the filmmakers for not simply rehashing the old zombie mythos that has been around since White Zombie.  Instead they take it into new territory, infusing it with energy and a bit of originality.
Plague is what we've come to expect from a Hammer Horror film: gorgeous sets, impeccable acting, and lush cinematography.  I really enjoyed this one and fans of the zombie genre will definitely appreciate how it helps to move the genre a bit forward, paving the way for the quantum leap that Romero would take two years later.
RATING: Excellent.
For more info check out the film's entry in IMDB.

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