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Dead Men Walk (1943)

Approved | | Drama, Horror, Mystery | 12 April 1943 (USA)
The twin of a kindly small-town physician returns from the grave for vengeance against his brother, who secretly killed him because the twin served Satan.



(original screenplay)

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Complete credited cast:
George Zucco ...
Nedrick Young ...
Fern Emmett ...
Robert Strange ...
Wilkins [Harper, in credits]
Hal Price ...
Sheriff Losen
Sam Flint ...


We meet Doctor Lloyd Clayton at the funeral of his twin brother, evil magician Elwyn. Zolarr, Elwyn's hunchbacked servant, acccuses Lloyd of Elwyn's murder, but Lloyd claims it was self-defense. Lloyd's niece Gayle and her fiance Harper soon find that Elwyn's evil influence is still at work. Written by Sister Grimm <srgrimm@teleport.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Devil's sorcery, as a dead man returns for vengeance!


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

12 April 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Créature du diable  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


George Zucco's estate from an earlier PRC film, The Mad Monster (1942), serves as the crypt for the evil twin. See more »


In the film, George Zucco differentiates the two characters by wearing glasses for the good doctor, and none for the evil one. Apart from when he forgets - most notably when, as the good doctor, he bends over not wearing any glasses, but when he stands up again (different cut) he suddenly is wearing them again. See more »


Elwyn Clayton: [to his twin brother, who has hunted him down] You don't wait for Death; you come to meet him!
See more »


Featured in Planet X: Episode #2.1 (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

"You'll pray for death long before you die".
23 July 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Following the death of his brother, Dr. Lloyd Clayton (George Zucco) methodically destroys all of his books and papers dealing in Satanism, sorcery and demonology. The good doctor is not above a little malevolence of his own though, as Elwyn Clayton's (also Zucco in a dual role) death was at the hands of Lloyd, a fact known by Elwyn's assistant Zolarr (Dwight Frye). In death as in life, Zolarr remains loyal to his master, and wages revenge against Dr. Clayton for his demise.

Elwyn's earthly studies turned him into a vampire after death, and with Zolarr's help in playing musical caskets, he whiles away the daylight hours sleeping in different locations, while Dr. Clayton's niece Gayle (Mary Carlisle) does the same after being bitten by Elwyn. Gayle's fiancé David (Nedrick Young) is convinced that Dr. Lloyd is somehow responsible for her infirmity and that he wants to kill her.

Meanwhile the town busybody Kate (Fern Emmett) seems to have the scoop on what's going on, though everyone thinks she's a bit loony. She's up on her vampire lore, and gives Gayle a silver cross to wear around her neck to thwart Elwyn's advances. She's also got the gumption to follow Zolarr and discover Elwyn's resting place. When Zolarr knocks her off to protect Elwyn, the town is up in arms and becomes a mob, believing that Dr. Lloyd is responsible for the murders.

Elwyn is rather unique in vampire cinema, as he not only conducts nightly sojourns in his physical body, but is also able to maintain a ghostly presence when it suits him. Note in Elwyn's first appearance to his brother after his death, that Lloyd pulls a gun out of his desk and fires point blank at Elwyn, standing directly in front of glass paneled doors. With nothing to stop the bullets, the glass remains intact!

For me, the shocker of the movie turned out to be the brief appearance of Fuzzy St. John, a perennial sidekick to screen cowboy Lash Larue. His goofy demeanor seems out of place, and if intended for comic relief, it didn't work.

For a poverty row effort from Producers Releasing Corporation (PRC), I found the film's atmospherics and low budget production values to be dead on entertaining for it's subject matter. George Zucco's portrayal of both the good and evil twins was effective, pulling off the effort the way George Reeves managed the Superman/Clark Kent routine. He looked similar enough to be brothers, but unlike enough to make it seem like two different people. With the fiery finale taking place at dawn, the good doctor sacrifices himself to insure that his demonic brother meets his doom as well.

Before concluding however, mention must be made of the opening scene with a great intro by uncredited Forrest Taylor. The ghostly face challenges the viewer's perception of satanic forces and the existence of witches, warlocks, and vampires. It's done with just the right touch of malice to propel the story forward. In it's way, it just may be the best part of the movie.

29 of 33 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Like watching 1920s German horror films with dialogue. silvrdal
awesome script entropy_five
Did Lloyd actually murder Elwyn? calvinnme
Not given his credit... songod-95003
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=61vg5BWB1DY rama24-217-573354
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