When her boyfriend is brutally murdered, after refusing to be shaken down by the local gangsters running their protection racket, Sugar Hill, decides not to get mad, but BAD! Calling upon ... See full summary »
When her boyfriend is brutally murdered, after refusing to be shaken down by the local gangsters running their protection racket, Sugar Hill, decides not to get mad, but BAD! Calling upon the help of aged voodoo queen Mama Maitresse, Sugar entreats her to call upon Baron Zamedi, the Lord of the Dead, for help in gaining a gruesome revenge. In exchange for her soul, the Dark Master raises up a zombie army to do her bidding. The bad guys who thought they were getting away clean are about to find out that they're DEAD wrong. Written by
Christopher Chase <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This was the film that brought to an end Robert Quarry's 4 year reign as a horror star at American International Pictures, which began with 1970's "Count Yorga Vampire." Both he and Vincent Price left the studio the same year. See more »
When Sugar is doing her photo shoot, we hear the sound of an auto-winder, but her camera does not have an auto-winder. See more »
Perhaps a drink on the house, sir. My particular special, a drink that I'm famous for... the Zombie!
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Silly and at times quite stupid....but also a great guilty pleasure
My rating of 4 is less because of the entertainment value of this film and more because of the overall cheesiness of the production. Quite often, the acting and writing are quite poor. Yet, despite all its deficiencies, it's still well worth seeing because it's fun--a definite guilty pleasure.
This is a relatively famous Blaxploitation film from the early to mid 1970s, though the film isn't as racy compared to many examples in the genre. While having some themes similar to such films as COFFEY and FOXY BROWN, this one features no nudity--a relative rarity for the genre. Also, while it is violent (as would be most zombie movies), this one is probably appropriate for teens. The best way to describe the film is like a combination of COFFEY, DR. PHIBES and BLACULA--an odd combination to say the least! The film begins with Sugar and her boyfriend enjoying a night out at his nightclub. Unfortunately, some scum sent by Mr. Big has come to make the guy an offer he can't refuse. However, he does refuse and is sent to the big nightclub in the sky.
Sugar isn't exactly Pam Grier, so instead of just taking the law into her own hands and killing the muthas, she enlists the aid of an old voodoo priestess (Zara Cully--'Mama Jefferson' from THE JEFFERSONS). Using the powers of darkness, they call upon Baron Samedi (that's the word for 'Saturday' in French). Samedi is a very obliging god of the underworld and agrees to help Sugar exact revenge on the mob. Some of the deaths are pretty lame (such as the knife and pig deaths), but some are very creative and creepy--and reminiscent of the great murders in the Dr. Phibes films.
While this plot is very silly, fortunately the folks from American-International Pictures didn't take it all too seriously. The film definitely has a sense of humor and because of this the film is curiously watchable even more than 30 years later.
PS--Aside from Ms. Cully, you may also recognize Mr. Big as Robert Quarry--the same actor who played a vampire in the Count Yorga films and dozens of other films since. Also, the very prolific actor Richard Lawson was also in the film--proving that this film was not the end to either of their careers!!
PPS--Baron Samedi is a REAL character from Haitian voodoo and is an awful lot like the character in this film. I looked it up and was shocked to see that this film didn't create this character!!
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