34 user 21 critic

Zombies of Mora Tau (1957)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Fantasy | March 1957 (USA)
Zombie-like, dead crewmen of a sunken ship have always prevented salvagers from claiming the wreck's legendary box of diamonds, but will a new group of treasure hunters succeed?



(story) (as George Plympton), (screenplay)

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

An ex-Nazi mad scientist uses radio-controlled atomic-powered zombies in his quest to help an exiled American gangster return to power.

Director: Edward L. Cahn
Stars: Richard Denning, Angela Stevens, S. John Launer
The Werewolf (1956)
Sci-Fi | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Two scientists come across an auto accident, and find an unconscious man in the wreck. They take him back to their lab and inject him with a serum they have been working with. Unfortunately... See full summary »

Director: Fred F. Sears
Stars: Don Megowan, Joyce Holden, Eleanore Tanin
Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  

A cosmetics queen develops a youth formula from jelly taken from queen wasps, failing to anticipate the typical hoary side effects.

Directors: Roger Corman, Jack Hill
Stars: Susan Cabot, Anthony Eisley, Barboura Morris
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Cemetery director Robert Kraft discovers that by arbitrarily changing the status of plots from empty to occupied on the planogram causes the death of the plots' owners.

Director: Albert Band
Stars: Richard Boone, Theodore Bikel, Peggy Maurer
Black Friday (1940)
Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Dr. Sovac transplants the brain of a gangster into his professor friend's body to save his life, but there is a side effect that causes a dangerous split personality.

Director: Arthur Lubin
Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Stanley Ridges
The Undead (1957)
Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4/10 X  

A beautiful woman is sent back in time via hypnosis to the Middle Ages where she finds she is suspected of being a witch, and subject to being executed.

Director: Roger Corman
Stars: Pamela Duncan, Richard Garland, Allison Hayes
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A search for a winning lottery ticket in his dead father's grave causes Sardonicus' face to freeze in a horrible grimace, until he forces a doctor to treat his affliction--with even more ... See full summary »

Director: William Castle
Stars: Ronald Lewis, Audrey Dalton, Guy Rolfe
Dementia 13 (1963)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Whilst out on a rowboat with his wife Louise, John Haloran has a heart attack and dies. She casts his body overboard and hides his death telling the family he left on an urgent business ... See full summary »

Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Stars: William Campbell, Luana Anders, Bart Patton
Night Monster (1942)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Kurt Ingston, a rich recluse, invites the doctors who left him a hopeless cripple to his desolate mansion in the swamps as one by one they meet horrible deaths.

Director: Ford Beebe
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Lionel Atwill, Leif Erickson
13 Ghosts (1960)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A family inherits what proves to be a haunted house, but a special pair of goggles allows them to see their ghostly tormentors.

Director: William Castle
Stars: Charles Herbert, Jo Morrow, Martin Milner
Voodoo Island (1957)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  

A wealthy industrialist hires the renowned hoax-buster Phillip Knight to prove that an island he plans to develop isn't voodoo cursed. However, arriving on the island, Knight soon realizes ... See full summary »

Director: Reginald Le Borg
Stars: Boris Karloff, Beverly Tyler, Murvyn Vye
Horror Island (1941)
Certificate: Passed Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A down-on-his luck businessman organizes an excursion to Sir Henry Morgan's Island for a treasure hunt only to encounter a mysterious phantom and murder.

Director: George Waggner
Stars: Dick Foran, Leo Carrillo, Peggy Moran


Cast overview:
Jeff Clark
Mona Harrison
Autumn Russell ...
Jan Peters
Joel Ashley ...
George Harrison
Dr. Jonathan Eggert
Grandmother Peters
Leonard P. Geer ...
Johnny (as Leonard Geer)
Karl 'Killer' Davis ...
Zombie (as Karl Davis)
William Baskin ...
Mel Curtis ...
Johnson - Crewman in Launch


Zombiefied sailors guard the treasure of a ship they went down with 60 years earlier. A group of sailors scoff at the legend, and decide to retrieve the diamonds from the ocean floor only to discover the hard way that there is some truth to legends. Written by Humberto Amador

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


ZOMBIES OF THE AFRICAN VOODOO COAST! (original poster - all caps) See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

March 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El fantasma de Mora-Tau  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Columbia Pictures released this film on a double bill with The Man Who Turned to Stone (1957) with the tag line: "Warning - This is the Most Shocking Horror Bill Ever Shown!" See more »


The first freighter seen on screen has two masts. But when we look back again, it now only has one mast. See more »


Jeff Clark: Do I look like I'm afraid of zombies?
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

The innocence of youth fumbles towards the dark abyss of adulthood.
10 September 2003 | by (Toronto, Canada) – See all my reviews

I react to movies the same way people react to music. In other words, when people hear an old song on the radio it takes them back to a time and place when they first heard the music, or its sounds evoke some private memories based on its atmosphere or tone. When I think of a film, above and beyond recalling the emotions it gave me, I also think of what was going on in my life at the moment of that screening. And if you've actively sought a title like this on this site, perhaps you do too.

ZOMBIES OF MORA TAU is certainly a juvenile, sometimes cardboard, horror movie, not least because zombie monsters were pretty juvenile after Victor Halperin and before George Romero. However this effort was made to please the juvenile within someone of any age. Why this film affects me is that I happened to watch it during the time in which I was preparing to leave my home town (and simply, my home) to go to school in the city. This was on a Thursday night just before the last true weekend of my youth, in which I was severing some ties while still grasping onto others. What I often did in this not-endless summer when I had the house to myself was take the VCR upstairs and hook it up to my little black-and-white TV in my bedroom-- having my own space, yet still being dependent on a bigger unit to do it. During this time I had an obsession with 1950's science fiction or horror movies, big or small, good or bad, simply because they took me to a comfortable inner landscape which these films idealized. The world still felt safe and unthreatening, and my youth still felt innocent before seeing "the real world" which existed outside my mind or my own little world. Perhaps subconsciously, this too explains why I have felt the need to re-visit these films again over the past few years. Only now, these innocent movies emerge as places in which I attempt to retrieve that last youth.

Now this behaviour may sound naive, but let's face it, so are a lot of these films that we escape to. Whether they're good or bad, big or small, these genre efforts of a bygone era can be now viewed as moving testaments to a safe place that we want back, yet nonetheless acknowledge we cannot have. It may also sound naive to subscribe such psychological stuff to a flick that's titled ZOMBIES OF MORA TAU, but there is a beautiful poetry at work in this movie if the viewer is willing to meet it on its own terms.

Despite that this movie somewhat lumbers to the adult within us, it still speaks to the child in that same body. I saw this film at a time when current horror films of the day attempted to scare people with blood and guts. This film is disarming in its innocence which invites the willing into its simple world-- it still manages to deliver the goods with such simple means as a creepy scene in which candles surround someone with "zombie fever". Plus, teenage boys of all ages still had a crush on Allison Hayes even 30 years after her films were made. Not for nothing did she become the fifty foot woman.

Having to return this 99-cent rental back to the country grocery store before it closed, I was in my car driving through the night, with the lights of the town behind me, pushing forward in the darkness. It was then that I realized that this sly metaphor encapsulated my life at that moment. And I also learned that because I had a soft spot for movies like this, that I was still trying to hang onto was receding in the background of my life. There was a wealth of memories, a state of being, that I admit I could not and cannot relive, but then as now, they remain as vital pieces of my human baggage.

36 of 50 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: