IMDb > Mortuary (1983/I)
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Mortuary (1983/I) More at IMDbPro »


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Down 8% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Howard Avedis (written by) &
Marlene Schmidt (written by)
View company contact information for Mortuary on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
2 September 1983 (USA) See more »
Before your funeral...Before you are buried...Before you are covered with the last shovelful of dirt...Be sure you are really dead! See more »
Convinced that her father's death was not accidental, a beautiful girl decides to investigate to find out the truth, aided by her boyfriend. Her sleuthing draws her to a local mortuary, where many secrets will be revealed. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
An unfortunate misfire (a misleading cover) See more (36 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Mary Beth McDonough ... Christie Parson (as Mary McDonough)
David Wallace ... Greg Stevens

Bill Paxton ... Paul Andrews

Lynda Day George ... Eve Parson

Christopher George ... Hank Andrews
Curt Ayers ... Jim
Bill Conklin ... Sheriff Duncan
Donna Garrett ... Mrs. Andrews
Greg Kaye ... Mark

Denis Mandel ... Josh
Violet Manes ... Mortuary Customer
Alvy Moore ... Bob Stevens

Danny Rogers ... Dr. Parson
Beth Scheffell ... Bonnie (as Beth Schaffel)
Marlene Schmidt ... Lois Stevens

Marilyn Corwin ... Dancer
Lisa Durazo ... Dancer
Anita Morales ... Dancer
Denise Polk ... Dancer
Kimberly Polk ... Dancer
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Pam Wren ... Dead girl in mortuary (uncredited)

Directed by
Howard Avedis 
Writing credits
Howard Avedis (written by) &
Marlene Schmidt (written by)

Produced by
Howard Avedis .... producer
Bernard Hodes .... associate producer
Ernest Kaye .... associate producer
Marlene Schmidt .... producer
Edward L. Montoro .... executive producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
John Cacavas 
Cinematography by
Gary Graver 
Film Editing by
Stanford C. Allen 
Art Direction by
Randy Ser 
Makeup Department
Jim Gillespie .... makeup artist
Diane Seletos .... makeup artist
Production Management
Herman Grigsby .... production manager
John R. Woodward .... unit manager (as John Woodward)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Herman Grigsby .... assistant director
Jeri Waxenberg .... second assistant director
Tim Cutt .... first assistant director (uncredited)
Art Department
Ed Wolf .... assistant art director
Sound Department
Rick Alexander .... sound re-recording mixer (as Richard Alexander)
Douglas Axtell .... boom operator (as Douglas Axtel)
Bob Biggart .... sound editor
Les Fresholtz .... sound re-recording mixer (as Lester Fresholtz)
Arthur Piantadosi .... sound re-recording mixer
Don Sanders .... sound mixer
Jonathon 'Earl' Stein .... sound mixer (as Jonathan Stein)
Darryl Linkow .... sound transfer (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Jim Gillespie .... special effects
Diane Seletos .... special effects
James Winburn .... stunt coordinator (as Jim Winburn)
Camera and Electrical Department
Ronny Dana .... second assistant camera (as Ron Dana)
George Horn .... still photographer
Jono Kouzouyan .... gaffer
Randy Nolen .... Steadicam operator
Bruce M. Pasternack .... first assistant camera (as Bruce Pasternack)
Bob Uva .... best boy grip
Michael Uva .... grip (as Mike Uva)
Doug Wood .... key grip (as Douglas Wood)
Jack Yanekian .... best boy electric
Virgil E. Hammond III .... Steadicam operator (uncredited)
Casting Department
Linda Arocha .... extras casting
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Marydith Chase .... wardrobe coordinator
Violet Manes .... wardrobe assistant
Diane Owen .... wardrobe assistant
Editorial Department
Barry Dresner .... assistant film editor
Jack Hooper .... negative cutter
Music Department
Bonnie Becker .... composer: songs
John Cacavas .... composer: songs
John Cacavas .... conductor
Terese Heston .... composer: songs
Terese Heston .... performer: songs
James D. Young .... music editor
Transportation Department
Lance Dickson .... transportation
Other crew
Donna Adrain .... assistant to producer
Evan Cole .... production assistant
Mark DeFrain .... production assistant
Ross Dickson .... production assistant
Hughy Hughes .... location auditor
Greg Kaye .... production assistant
Edward L. Montoro .... presenter
Rick O'Brian .... production assistant
Chester J. Pompei .... technical advisor
Donna Schaffel .... assistant to producer
Jennifer Stace .... choreographer
Jeri Waxenberg .... production coordinator
David Wildman .... production assistant
Nike Zachmanoglou .... script supervisor
Jim Gillespie .... stand-in (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
91 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Finland:K-18 | Iceland:16 | Norway:18 (video premiere) | UK:18 | USA:R | West Germany:18 (cut)

Did You Know?

Christopher George's final film.See more »
Continuity: Christie has earrings on during her nightmare, they disappear when she is outside walking to the pool, but reappear when she enters the pool.See more »
Christie Parson:Hey Boogeyman- let's boogie!See more »
Movie Connections:


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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful.
An unfortunate misfire (a misleading cover), 9 March 2002
Author: Dan Grant ( from Toronto, Ontario

I think perhaps you know your film is in trouble when you have to disguise it as something it is not. The cover on the video cassette when we rented this movie read, " Before your funeral, before that last shovel of earth is put over you...make sure you are really dead." That sounds intriguing. This makes me think I am going to watch a film about some sick b**tard who is going to attack (whoever) and then attempt to bury them alive. That sounds interesting to me, more than that, it sounds like a great premise for a horror film. But as I watched the film, I kept waiting for something, anything to happen. But it never does. And that is unfortunate because there are some great elements to the film that could lend it the credibility it needs to reach cult status. Bill Paxton has one of his first starring roles, you have the husband and wife team of Lynda and Christopher George and you have a good premise. What this film does not have is execution.

The film begins on a promising note. A man is murdered in his backyard in broad daylight. Next, two friends enter a warehouse to collect some tires that one says his former boss owes him. They begin to hear voices and decide to check them out. They end up seeing what looks to be a black magic ritual and leading this ritual is one of the kid's former boss. His name is Hank Andrews and played by Christopher George, he is ripe with suspicion from the outset. Is he the killer? He could be since he is performing the mumbo-jumbo with a bunch of ladies dressed in black cloaks.

Soon the boys separate and then one of them dies, without the other knowing. This sets up the rest of the film where everyone is trying to figure out what the hell is going on. We are introduced to Bill Paxton as the mortician's son and then there are the usual players in the hero and the heroine.

The problem with this film is that it is not scary enough for horror purists, not nearly enough gore for a film about embalmment and another major problem with the film is it tells you who the killer is about an hour into the film and then for the last half hour all you have is the hero trying to stop him. I don't mean to be cynical but even an episode of Scooby Doo doesn't reveal the villain until the final two minutes of the show. I think this ruins the film because up until that point I wasn't thrilled with the film but I wasn't bored either. But the last half hour of the film is just the killer playing Mozart and talking to his victims he is about to kill while they are in a catatonic state. I don't see how the director could possibly see this as interesting, freaky, scary or entertaining. There are just too many plots cavities to make this a real cheesy classic like some of the other horror quickies that were offered to us in the early 80's.

There are some good elements to the film, one of them being the music and the other being Bill Paxton's performance as a mortician's son who just happens to be a couple cans short of a six pack. First, the music reminded me of Friday the 13th overtures and it worked quite effectively here. The few times that there was a little tension in the film the music contributes nicely to it. I cannot say it is on par with some of the greats like Halloween, but it certainly isn't a nuisance. Secondly, Bill Paxton is just about the finest thing in this mess of a film. I know there are many people out there that happen to think that Bill Paxton is one of the most under-appreciated actors working today (I am one of them). Here he gets to ham it up for the camera. He has a few memorable scenes which some of the other reviewers have commented on. There is a scene that has him running through a cemetery with flowers in his hand that had me cracking up. Also his final few scenes where is talking to himself, you can see he is doing is absolute best to pull off what the screenwriters have doomed him to say, and he almost does it without looking like a complete idiot. Bill Paxton is a credit to the film and without him it may not even be as good as it is.

All in all Mortuary is a waste of time. Many films tried to cash in on the horror craze of the 80's and this was one of them. There is really nothing to remember about this film as it created more levity surrounding it than sheer terror. And although that is not it's only problem, it is a major one. There are some very good cheeseball horror films that have entered my V.C.R. Some of those include The Prey, The Burning, The Forest and The Beast Within just to name a few. These are the types of films that aren't going to win any Oscar's but they will grace the pages of Fangoria. And although you may find Mortuary in one of the back issues, even they would have to admit that this is an unfortunate misfire.

5.5 out of 10--It receives a passing grade because of the eerie music and Bill Paxton.

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