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Greetings, and welcome to VIEWING THE CLASSICS. Here you'll find capsule reviews of vintage movies from the early days of cinema through the 1970s, with a special emphasis on sci-fi, horror, and mystery movies. Be sure to check out the Pages links, where you can find a Film Index of all my reviews, links to the reviews organized by cast members, directors, and other contributors, and links to my reviews of the films of talented young director Joshua Kennedy.

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Monday, October 28, 2013

Dead Men Walk (1943)

Starring George Zucco, Mary Carlisle, Nedrick Young, Dwight Frye, Fern Emmett
Directed by Sam Newfield
(actor & director credits courtesy IMDB.com)

A climactic battle between a good doctor and his evil brother results in the death of the evil brother, but he returns from beyond the grave as a vampire.

George Zucco plays both the good and evil brothers in this low-budget horror film, and while Zucco had excelled in a number of villainous roles over the years, he's not surrounded by enough here, nor is the film polished enough to make this a memorable showcase.  The vampire scenes are presented rather drably, with little imagination put forth in their staging, and despite the inspired casting of Dwight Frye as a villainous henchman, (who memorably played the unbalanced Renfield in Dracula), he's not given enough to do to enliven the production.  The film still makes for interesting viewing, but despite the promise of the premise, it's just not one of Zucco's finer hours.

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