IMDb > The Town That Dreaded Sundown (1976)
The Town That Dreaded Sundown
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The Town That Dreaded Sundown (1976) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

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6.1/10   2,115 votes »
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View company contact information for The Town That Dreaded Sundown on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
24 December 1976 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Not Everyone Who Comes to This Lover's Lane Has the Same Thing on Their Mind. See more »
Plot:
A Texas Ranger hunts for a hooded serial killer terrorizing the residents of a small town, set in 1946 Arkansas. Loosely based on a true story. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
In the Solid B-Movie Tradition See more (81 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Ben Johnson ... Captain J.D. Morales

Andrew Prine ... Deputy Norman Ramsey

Dawn Wells ... Helen Reed
Jimmy Clem ... Sgt. Mal Griffin
Jim Citty ... Police Chief R.J. Sullivan
Charles B. Pierce ... Patrolman A.C. Benson
Robert Aquino ... Sheriff Otis Barker
Cindy Butler ... Peggy Loomis
Christine Ellsworth ... Linda Mae Jenkins
Earl E. Smith ... Dr. Kress (as Earl E. Smith)

Steve Lyons ... Roy Allen
Joe Catalanotto ... Eddie LeDoux (as Joe Catalanatto)
Roy Lee Brown ... Rainbow Johnson
Mike Hackworth ... Sammy Fuller
Misty West ... Emma Lou Cook
Rick Hildreth ... Buddy Turner
Jason Darnell ... Capt. Gus Wells
Mike Downs ... Newspaper Reporter
Bill Dietz ... Newspaper Reporter
Carolyn Moreland ... Newspaper Reporter
Michael Brown ... Police Officer
Woody Woodman ... F.B.I. Agent
James Duff McAdams ... Sheriff's Deputy (as James D. McAdams)
John Stroud ... Dr. Preston Hickson
Mason Andres ... Rev. Harden
Richard Green ... High School Principal
Dorothy Darlene Orr ... Dispatcher
Don Adkins ... Suspect
Bud Davis ... The Phantom Killer
Vern Stierman ... Narrator (voice)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Dennis Lehane ... Texas Ranger (uncredited)
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Directed by
Charles B. Pierce 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Earl E. Smith 

Produced by
Samuel Z. Arkoff .... executive producer
Thomas W. Moore .... associate producer (as Tom Moore)
Charles B. Pierce .... producer
 
Original Music by
Jaime Mendoza-Nava  (as Jaime Mendosa-Nava)
 
Cinematography by
James W. Roberson  (as Jim Roberson)
 
Film Editing by
Tom Boutross 
 
Art Direction by
Grant Sinclair 
Myrl Teeter 
 
Makeup Department
Cheri Minns .... makeup artist (as Cheri Johnston)
 
Production Management
Bob Gates .... production manager
 
Art Department
Denise Broulette .... assistant props
Libby Smith .... property master
 
Sound Department
Dick Damon .... production sound mixer
Dan Finnity .... sound effects
Dimitry Gortinsky .... sound effects
Phil Haberman .... sound effects
Andrew Herbert .... sound effects
Fred Judkins .... sound effects
Fred Payne .... boom operator
Richard Portman .... sound re-recordist
Steve Shearsby .... sound effects
 
Special Effects by
Joe Catalanotto .... special effects (as Joe Catalanatto)
 
Stunts
Bud Davis .... stunt coordinator
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Sam Butler .... grip
Joe Catalanotto .... gaffer (as Joe Catalanatto)
Jim Davis .... grip
Kevin Davis .... grip
Steve Fleet .... grip
Steve Lyons .... first assistant camera (1976)
Moss May .... grip
Cheyenne Rivera .... camera boat operator
Michael Sherfey .... second assistant camera
John Stroud Jr. .... grip
Dan Williams .... grip
Tim Williams .... grip
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Chris Ellsworth .... assistant wardrobe
Karen Jones .... wardrobe
Bonnie Langriff .... wardrobe
 
Editorial Department
Betty Moortgat .... negative cutter
 
Other crew
Lynn Andres .... production assistant
Cindy Langford .... slate girl
Barbara Pryor .... script supervisor
Ginger Tanton .... production assistant
 

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
86 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
This movie is a semi-documentary based on the real-life string of mysterious killings that terrorized the people of Texarkana, Texas, in 1946. The murder spree became known as the "Texarkana Moonlight Murders" and ultimately would claim five lives and injure many others. The only description of the killer ever obtained was of a hooded man. To this day no one has been convicted and these murders remain unsolved.See more »
Goofs:
Anachronisms: In the sheriff's office, there are some shots of the bulletin board in the background. On the board is the FBI's Wanted Poster for Frank Morris, following his escape from USP Alcatraz. The Alcatraz escape took place in June of 1962, sixteen years after the events in the film.See more »
Quotes:
Patrolman A.C. Benson:What the hell is wrong with you, boy? You try that again and the Supreme Court of the United States ain't gonna be able to save your ass!See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
In the Solid B-Movie Tradition, 14 June 2012
Author: dougdoepke from Claremont, USA

The movie reminds me of one of those ace 1940's chillers, like Follow Me Quietly (1949). Based on fact, Sundown is about a phantom killer who stalks lover's lanes in Texarkana, and police efforts to catch him. Of course, without the heavy hand of a '40's Production Code, Sundown is much more graphic than anything from that earlier decade.

Importantly, however, this is not a slasher movie. There is some blood and violence, but the chief effect comes from the larger than usual sound department. The screams from victims are both unrelenting and unnerving. The girls really do sound terrified. Then there's the heavy breathing from the hooded killer, which are the only sounds he makes and about as chilling as the screams.

Credit producer-director Pierce with making shrewd use of a small budget. The Arkansas locations add both color and authenticity, along with the unforced drawls of southern born leads Johnson and Prine. The movie also does a good job of recreating a '40's milieu, even down to the girls' bobby-sox that brings back fond memories. My only gripe is with Pierce— he should stick to producing-directing because his turn as the inept patrolman Benson is too out of sync and silly for the movie as a whole.

Judging from some Google searches, it looks like the screenplay sticks pretty close to the general facts of a case that also appears to have entered the realm of regional folklore. Given the spookiness, I can see why. Anyway, the overall result is a nail-biter in the outstanding tradition of B-movie chillers, with a rather surprising outcome.

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Message Boards

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Some say he still walks the streets ... (spoiler) mcguitar
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