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Dead & Buried (1981)

R  |   |  Horror, Mystery  |  29 May 1981 (USA)
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A suspense horror film set in a small coastal town where, after a series of gory murders commited by mobs of townspeople against visiting tourists, the corpses begin to come back to life.


(as Gary A. Sherman)


(story), (story), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Sheriff Dan Gillis
Janet Gillis
William G. Dobbs
Linda (as Nancy Locke Hauser)
Girl on the Beach / Nurse Lisa
Michael Currie ...
George Le Moyne / Freddie
Joseph G. Medalis ...
Doctor (as Joe Medalis)
Estelle Omens ...


Sheriff Dan Gillis has a nice life with his wife, the teacher Janet Gillis, in the small coastal and friendly town of Potter's Bluff. When visitors are mysterious killed in the town, Sheriff Gillis investigates the cases carefully and finds that dead people are reanimating and coming back to life. Dan finds a book of witchcraft and voodoo in his wife's drawer and he suspects that she might be practicing black magic. Dan meets the coroner-mortician William G. Dobbs and learns the dreadful and surprising secret. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


It will take your breath away... all of it. See more »


Horror | Mystery


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

29 May 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El despertar de los muertos  »

Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This was actor Jack Albertson's final theatrical film (although he filmed another made-for-TV movie the same year he died). In poor health and suffering from cancer all through filming, Albertson passed away a few months after this movie's release. He nonetheless lived long enough to see it at its world premier in Hollywood, in which he attended in a wheelchair with an oxygen tank and mask. See more »


The hitchhiker can be seen as a zombie before she is actually killed, reconstructed and brought back to life. This is because the abandoned house scene - where she is clearly visible as one of the dead townfolk - was originally placed in the film after her resurrection. See more »


Dobbs: I was more than mildly insulted. Just because I'm a mortician she had the audacity to insinuate that I might have knowledge of the black arts!
See more »


Featured in Stan Winston's Dead & Buried EFX (2003) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Moody, magical horror
9 January 2004 | by (Mountains of Madness) – See all my reviews

Gary Sherman's horror masterpiece begins with one of cinema's best beatings (and burnings) of a fellow human being. The scene takes place on a beach in Potter's Bluff (Mendocino, No. Cal) and is a hypnotic, brutal, black shock to the system.

The beating is filmed by a mild-mannered pipe-smoking old man, a waitress, a mechanic and many other affable citizens of the area. It sets the scene for much grotesquery to come.

DEATH LINE (aka RAW MEAT) demonstrated that Sherman had the goods. DEAD AND BURIED cements him into the brickwork of the horror hall of fame.

Future Freddy Kruger (Robert Englund) makes an appearance, as does sexy Lisa Blount from AN OFFICER AND A GENTLEMAN. But the film's real star is the (now dead and buried himself) Jack Albertson as the coroner of Potter's Bluff. Albertson's is an eccentric, layered, career-best performance.

The tone is dream-like and ethereal. Even interiors are filled with mist. A foghorn is heard constantly. Nobody is who they seem.

A stand-out is a Super-8 home video shot by some students. Its climax provides a not unexpected revelation and the film itself perfectly embodies the horror of corruption which director Sherman is pushing.

The film did zero theatrical business because it's too damn weird for most audiences, and too damn good. But it has developed a cult on video.


16 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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More recommendations... PottersBluff
Personally, I'd like to see this remade. gillmanfan2000
Resident Evil 4 Similarities? master_d
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What happens at the end? robynkash
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