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David L. Hewitt
Lon Chaney Jr.,
A man who is having an affair with a married woman is dropped off on the wrong street when going back to his hotel. He takes refuge out of the rain when an old man invites him in. He turns out to be a mortician, who tells him the stories of the people who have wound up in his establishment over the course of four stories. Written by
Anonymous & SicCoyote
A decent no-frills horror anthology that begins with a cheating husband know only as Talmudge trying to locate his hotel in a taxi during a downpour. When the driver drops him off on a darkly lit street that apparently is not the correct address he drives off leaving Talmudge to fend for himself on a very wet evening. Stumbling upon a residence he encounters an elderly individual who invites him in from the rain which Talmudge nervously excepts. He learns that the old man is a mortician who seems interested in showing him some of his "clients" along with a little backstory on how they met with their respective demises. With an apprehensive Talmudge as his witness the mortician begins. The first story is a short one about a teacher that hates children (I had quite a few of them). When she arrives home she is harassed by what seem to be small children in Halloween masks who turn out to be anything but. The second story is also short and is by far the weakest of the four, concerning a man who likes to videotape himself murdering women. This story literally goes nowhere. Next is a pleasantly engaging number about two of the world's best criminologists, one from New York the other from England, engaged in a spirited investigation when one of them receives a rather cryptic note concerning murder. The ending, though no surprise, is still quite satisfying. Last is sort of an early and gore-free "Saw" as a pompous office worker who has no time for anyone else gets himself trapped in an abandoned store that has been turned into a trap complete with a wall of nails as he is held captive with only a bottle of wine occasionally rolled into his prison by a faceless person. Upon his mysterious release he is transformed into the very blight on society that he himself so loathed. When the stories are finished it is time for Talmudge's come-uppance as this is about punishing people for their sins and he is after all an adulterer to which the mortician has his coffin at the ready.
You won't recognize anybody in this movie nor will the made-for-t.v. feel instill any genuine fear while watching it. However, I do think that for the most part the stories were pretty interesting considering this was made before both "Creepshow" and "Twilight Zone the Movie" which had bigger budgets. Sadly, when one thinks of "House of the Dead" they more than likely associate it with the Uwe Boll abomination based on the video game rather than this film which is tragic. Why anyone would name this "Alien Zone" is a mystery to me as there isn't a hint of aliens to speak of. I did see the heavily edited 74 minute version as the running time on the DVD jacket said it was 100 minutes long. Twenty six minutes is a lot to cut out so who knows maybe there are aliens in that one. Might be a little too light for hard core horror fans but never the less I recommend giving this flick a shot.
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