IMDb > The Dead Talk Back (1993)

The Dead Talk Back (1993) More at IMDbPro »


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Merle S. Gould (written by)
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Release Date:
1957 (USA) See more »
A psychic researcher attempts to solve a murder by using a radio that enables him to speak with the dead. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
Entertaining in its absurdity See more (23 total) »


  (in credits order)
Aldo Farnese ... Henry Krasker
Scott Douglas ... Lieutenant Lewis
Laura Brock ... Renee Coliveil
Earl Sands ... Harry
Myron Natwick ... Raymond Milburn
Kyle Stanton ... Christy Mattling
Sammy Ray ... Tony Pettini
Curtis Roberts ... Frits Kreuger
Don Parker ... Don Harris
Janeanna Pritchard ... Hope Byington
Rose Gorman ... Alice Corman
Betty Ruth ... Sarah Sthoil
Mat Maracco ... Harold Yonger
Lyn Douglas ... First Photo Receptionist
Eileen Leavitt ... Second Photo Receptionist
Dennis Gould ... Denny Sthoil
Ronnie Gould ... Ronnie Sthoil
Betty Winnick ... Photo Customer
Grace Quinn ... Photographer's Model
Gil Martin ... Policeman
J.S. Serfozo ... Policeman
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Don Cheek ... Bongo Player (uncredited)
George Rhoden ... Bongo Player (uncredited)
Janice Smith ... Singer (uncredited)

Directed by
Merle S. Gould 
Writing credits
Merle S. Gould (written by)

Produced by
Merle S. Gould .... producer
Music Department
Don Cheek .... musician: bongo drums
George Rhoden .... musician: bongo drums
Van Phillips .... composer: stock music (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

65 min
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Shot in 1957, the film was never seen outside of an editing machine until 1993, when it was discovered by Sinister Cinema at the old offices of Headliner Productions. Sinister bought the rights to sell it on video in 1993. It gained the most attention when it was shown on "Mystery Science Theater 3000" (1988).See more »
Boom mic visible: Shadow of boom mic visible in top left corner of screen while the detectives question Frits Kreuger.See more »
Christy Mattling:[to Henry Krasker] Tellin' them innocent kids stories about the dead and their hauntings! That's the work of the devil. You'll pay for it. The Devil! That man is the Devil Himself!
Renee Coliveil:Oh shut up, you potentate of righteousness!
See more »


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11 out of 11 people found the following review useful.
Entertaining in its absurdity, 18 September 2006
Author: MartianOctocretr5 from Redondo Beach, CA

At the opening, you see some guy in a trench coat running around in the dark, watching two people on a date. Soon, this detached scene makes way for some recluse masquerading as a "scientist" who welcomes you into his quasi-Halloween type laboratory. He demonstrates for you an array of inventions here, such as a fog horn you can take to your grave, in case you wake up in your coffin after being buried. He also shows you a pebble that he uses to tune into dead peoples' radio stations. He has hair that looks like Don King on steroids, and he sounds like Pee Wee Herman's evil twin.

A brutal murder of a woman at a boarding house where a crossbow is used (!) is counted down to with a stop watch, as you meet the other tenants, who are the suspects in the killing: the elderly landlord, the victim's friend, a bible thumping zealot, a toothy-voiced DJ on a 5 watt radio station, a stereotypical German guy, a wimpy underweight peeping-Tom, and the landlord's daughter and bratty grandchildren. The characterizations are wonderfully and comically over-emoted and strained to the breaking point, especially by the wimp, the German, and the zealot. These guys are hysterical, but then, so is the bizarre version of a seance, where the goofy scientist tries out his invention to contact the victim. I love the red herring conclusion, which absent-mindedly ignores the whole premise of the movie.

The odd thing is how seriously the movie takes itself, as it endeavors to portray psychic investigations, and mix it with a murder mystery. The acting, scripting, and editing make this "strange case" come off as ludicrous camp. The MST3K gang had a field day with this one, and any connoisseur of humorously inept film making needs to see this movie.

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