IMDb > Zombie Lake (1981)
Le lac des morts vivants
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Zombie Lake (1981) More at IMDbPro »Le lac des morts vivants (original title)

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Overview

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2.9/10   2,162 votes »
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Release Date:
13 May 1981 (France) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
God help us if they rise again!
Plot:
In a small village, somewhere in France, German soldiers, killed and thrown into the lake by the Resistance during WW II, come back. See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
NewsDesk:
(23 articles)
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User Reviews:
Father/daughter subplot is only reason to watch unless you're doing a doctoral thesis on the worst zombie films ever, in which case this is a necessary pit stop. See more (85 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)
Howard Vernon ... The Mayor
Pierre-Marie Escourrou ... German Soldier (as Pierre Escourrou)
Anouchka ... Helena

Antonio Mayans ... Morane (as Robert Foster)
Nadine Pascal ... Helena's Mother
Youri Radionow ... Chanac (as Youri Rad)
Bertrand Altmann (as Burt Altman)
Gilda Arancio ... Blonde Girl Swimmer
Marcia Sharif ... Katya
Yvonne Dany
Jean Rene Bleu
Jean Rollin ... Stiltz
Edmond Besnard ... Promizoulin
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
René Douglas
Julián Esteban
Alain Petit
Jean Roville
Claude Sendron
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Directed by
Jean Rollin  (as J.A. Laser)
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Julián Esteban  story (as Julius Valery)
Jesús Franco  (as A.L. Mariaux)

Produced by
Daniel Lesoeur .... associate producer
Marius Lesoeur .... producer
Sean Warner .... co-producer
Daniel White .... producer
 
Original Music by
Daniel White 
 
Cinematography by
Max Monteillet 
 
Film Editing by
Claude Gros 
María Luisa Soriano 
 
Makeup Department
Christiane Sauvage .... makeup artist
 
Special Effects by
Michael Nizza .... special effects
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Henri-Jean Alliet .... underwater photographer
 
Other crew
Ilona Kunesova .... script supervisor
 

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Le lac des morts vivants" - France (original title)
"Zombies Lake" - Europe (English title)
See more »
Runtime:
90 min | Germany:71 min | Spain:88 min | Argentina:89 min | UK:83 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Eastmancolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Argentina:18 | Canada:R (Ontario) | Canada:13+ (Quebec) | France:12 | Germany:16 (heavily cut) (1990s) | UK:18 | USA:Not Rated | West Germany:Not Rated (uncut) (1980s)
Filming Locations:
Company:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Jesús Franco was planned to direct but was replaced by Jean Rollin at the very last minute. Rollin later said he deeply regretted having accepted as soon as he read the script. Jean Rollin felt so embarrassed by this film that he wouldn't admit for years he directed it, under the name J.A. Lazer.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: At the beginning of the film, we see the young woman fully dressed and carrying a bag with her, however six minutes in a gentleman asks a woman where she went stating that the young girl left her bag behind.See more »
Quotes:
Morane:So, you think that ghosts killed them?
The Mayor:Yes, that is what I think.
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

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9 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
Father/daughter subplot is only reason to watch unless you're doing a doctoral thesis on the worst zombie films ever, in which case this is a necessary pit stop., 1 August 2006
Author: Death_to_Pan_and_Scan from United States

This film can get pretty amusing at times in its ridiculousness. I gave it an extra point just for the subplot which while silly was an unusual touch that added something to this otherwise awful film.

Zombie fans often list this film as THE WORST zombie film ever (Jess Franco's Nazi zombie film "Oasis of the Zombies" is similarly categorized for its awfulness). There are equally bad and even worse zombie films, as hard as it may be to believe if you haven't seen them before this (shot on video backyard films like "Stink of Flesh" or Super8mm epics like "Dead Life" come to mind). Jean Rollin made a better not-quite-zombie story with the tainted vineyard plague film "Grapes of Death" which I recommend over this and which had vague similarity to Romero's "The Crazies". If you want a decent Nazi zombies film, check out Ken 'RotLD2' Wiederhorn's "Shock Waves" instead.

Now back to the bad movie at hand: This is a low point for Jean Rollin, a well-known Eurotrash filmmaker who made some visually interesting and atmospheric films, of which this is not one. The overwhelming amount of nudity here seems fairly typical for him (he did make some lesbian vampire films, after all) but the atmosphere does not remind me of other work of his I have seen. It took me a couple sittings to make it through this garbage, but it did have its moments. How many times have you seen zombies attempt hand to hand combat, even using a knife? Sadly there are not enough of these painfully silly moments to rescue this film to the 'so bad its good' list.

ZOMBIE MAKEUP: green hands & face paint with movie blood, which often washes off in underwater scenes which seem to be shot in a swimming pool with a greenish curtain backdrop.

DE-ANIMATION METHOD: Napalm them to dust with a flamethrower! ZOMBIE FEASTING?: these are what I call 'necking zombies'. They don't feast in traditional Romero or O'Bannon sense; they simply chew at necks and drink blood like they are pretend vampires. Their victims, however, do NOT turn into zombies.

STORY: During the OP credits we see an attractive woman strip down for a skinny dip in a lake like a bad attempt to recreate a scene out of 'Jaws' or 'Piranha'. She ignores a warning sign by knocking it over. It's not a simple 'no swimming' sign mind you, but a skull and crossbones that would seem to indicate some reasonable level of danger. Needless to say, she gets killed by a zombie. Another village woman gets killed and her father pays the mayor a visit wanting it investigated.

The mayor tells a visiting reporter about the haunted lake with some mumbo jumbo about black magic sacrifices being done there and Nazis killed by the local resistance whose bodies were dumped there for hiding. Now the Nazis are back as zombies killing locals.

A van packed with a girls' basketball team strips down for full frontal underwater footage (while indescribably bad cheesy music plays) and the girls are attacked by zombies whose makeup is coming off almost as quick as the girls' clothes did. Inept horror movie cops are dispatched to investigate.

***WARNING, SPOILERS AHEAD*** There's a young girl whose daddy was a German soldier killed in a local battle right after her mommy died in her childbirth. Now daddy comes back from his watery grave to meet her and protects her from other zombies including being attacked by a knife-wielding zombie. Yes, you read that right! The zombies also attack villagers with sideways karate chops. Go figure.

Enlisted to help solve the locals' walking dead problem, the zombie's daughter asks for a whole lotta blood to set a trap for them, but she wants her daddy spared. Her guardian convinces her that daddy zombie WANTS to die (probably to escape from being trapped in this awful movie). During the final zombie rampage through town, the reporter follows a movie tradition of stupidly needing to get that all-important photo shot.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Zombie Lake (1981)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
It's not the worst zombie film ever.... thegees
Perfect for Fathers Day jjk50
In what year is this set? dan-2288
Aquatic Nazi Zombie Films eden-35
Brilliant movie. greyvelvet87
Worst zombie movie ever? Aren't you a litlle kind? wnip
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