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I Walked with a Zombie (1943)

Approved | | Fantasy, Horror | 30 April 1943 (USA)
A Canadian nurse is hired to care for the wife of a sugar plantation owner, who has been acting strangely, on a Caribbean island.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Christine Gordon ...
Theresa Harris ...
Alma - Maid (as Teresa Harris)
Sir Lancelot ...
Calypso Singer
...
Jeni Le Gon ...
Dancer (as Jeni LeGon)
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Storyline

Young Canadian nurse Betsy comes to the West Indies to care for Jessica, the wife of a plantation manager Paul Holland. Jessica seems to be suffering from a kind of mental paralysis as a result of fever. When she falls in love with Paul, Betsy determines to cure Jessica even if she needs to use a voodoo ceremony, to give Paul what she thinks he wants. Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

See it happen--right before your startled eyes...in the screen sensation that rips the mask from the darkest secrets of forbidden voodoo! See more »

Genres:

Fantasy | Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 April 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Yo dormí con un fantasma  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sir Lancelot wrote the song "Shame and Scandal in the Family" for this movie. In the early 1960s Lord Melody used the melody and the chorus and an old humorous story to create a new song, initially called "Wau Wau", though it became more familiarly known under its original title. The song was recorded by a variety of international artists (e.g.. The Kingston Trio, Odetta, Peter Tosh and The Wailers), even becoming a #1 hit in Australia. In the course of its life, the original writers have been ignored at times, with the authorship being attributed to a duo of Donaldson and Brown, instead of Sir Lancelot and Ardel Wray (the film's co-writer). See more »

Goofs

When Besty goes to talk with Wes on the porch about an hour into the film, they are both lit by light coming through the louvered door to the left. But, in the next closer shot, that striped lighting pattern disappears. See more »

Quotes

Betsy Connell: [first lines, narration] I walked with a zombie.
[laughs]
Betsy Connell: It does seem an odd thing to say. Had anyone said that to me a year ago, I'm not at all sure I would have known what a zombie was. Oh, I might have had some notion that they were strange and frightening - even a little funny. It all began in such an ordinary way...
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Crazy Credits

At the beginning, in small letters at the bottom of the screen is this disclaimer: The characters and events depicted in this photoplay are fictional. Any similarity to any persons, living, dead, OR POSSESSED, is entirely coincidental. See more »


Soundtracks

The British Grenadiers
(uncredited)
Music: 18th century or earlier
Lyrics anonymous
Played on guitar and Sung by Sir Lancelot
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Great horror film, almost a 10
27 October 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A nurse (Frances Dee) is assigned to the West Indies to care for the semi-comatose wife of a plantation owner (Tom Conway). Over there she becomes involved with a very dysfunctional family and the realization that her patient may be a zombie--one of the living dead.

Eerie, poetic horror film--one of the great ones producer Val Lewton made for RKO on no budget. There are many creepy sequences--the crying and first meeting of Dee with her patient; the constant pounding of the voodoo drums in the distance at night; Dee being awakened by shadows outside her bedroom window; the walk through the sugar cane field to the voodoo ritual and the guard they must pass. There's also a man with a guitar who pops up from time to time acting as a Greek chorus--always commenting on the action. The script is very good and literate and the acting is actually not bad--except for Conway (who's lousy). But Ellison and Dee are good.

I almost gave this a 10--but one thing kept me from doing that. The silly love story between Conway and Dee. It's not needed and is a great distraction from the plot. Also Conway's acting is so bad that it makes the scenes play even worse. Those aside though, it's a truly great horror film. A must see.

Cute little trivia note: Look closely for the "Any characters and events depicted in this photoplay..." etc. etc. under the opening credits. Especially note this line: "Any similarity to actual persons living, dead, OR POSSESSED is purely coincidental." Cute joke...wonder how many people caught it.


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