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I Walked with a Zombie (1943)

Approved | | Drama, Fantasy, Horror | 30 April 1943 (USA)
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A Canadian nurse is hired to care for the wife of a sugar plantation owner, who has been acting strangely, on a Caribbean island.

Director:

Jacques Tourneur

Writers:

Curt Siodmak (screenplay), Ardel Wray (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
James Ellison ... Wesley Rand
Frances Dee ... Betsy Connell
Tom Conway ... Paul Holland
Edith Barrett ... Mrs. Rand
James Bell ... Dr. Maxwell
Christine Gordon Christine Gordon ... Jessica Holland
Theresa Harris ... Alma - Maid (as Teresa Harris)
Sir Lancelot Sir Lancelot ... Calypso Singer
Darby Jones ... Carrefour
Jeni Le Gon Jeni Le Gon ... Dancer (as Jeni LeGon)
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Storyline

Young Canadian nurse Betsy comes to the West Indies to care for Jessica, the wife of a plantation manager Paul Holland. Jessica seems to be suffering from a kind of mental paralysis as a result of fever. When she falls in love with Paul, Betsy determines to cure Jessica even if she needs to use a voodoo ceremony, to give Paul what she thinks he wants. Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

See this strange, strange story of a woman whose lure set brother against brother; whose love caused hate - and whose beauty bowed to the will of an evil spell in whose power we must refuse to believe - EVEN IF IT'S TRUE! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 April 1943 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Yo dormí con un fantasma See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider. See more »

Goofs

When Besty goes to talk with Wes on the porch about an hour into the film, they are both lit by light coming through the louvered door to the left. But, in the next closer shot, that striped lighting pattern disappears. See more »

Quotes

Mrs. Rand: She is dead.
Dr. Maxwell: Now, Mrs. Rand.
Mrs. Rand: She is dead - living and dead.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the beginning, in small letters at the bottom of the screen is this disclaimer: The characters and events depicted in this photoplay are fictional. Any similarity to any persons, living, dead, OR POSSESSED, is entirely coincidental. See more »

Connections

Featured in Val Lewton: The Man in the Shadows (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Fort Holland Calypso Song
(1943) (uncredited)
Music and Lyrics by Sir Lancelot
Played on guitar and sung by Sir Lancelot
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Ambiguous Zombie Movie
4 November 2014 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

The Canadian nurse Betsy Connell (Frances Dee) is hired to travel to St. Sebastian, in West Indies, to work at Fort Holland nursing Jessica Holland (Christine Gordon), the wife of the sugar plantation owner Paul Holland (Tom Conway). Betsy meets Paul in the ship and is welcomed by Paul's estranged half-brother Wesley "Wes" Rand (James Ellison) in the farmhouse. During the night, she overhears a woman crying and she believes that might be Jessica and goes to her room. She finds a creepy mute woman and she learns that Jessica had a mental paralysis after a severe tropical fever and is a hopeless case, unable to speak or have power. Soon Betsy falls in love with Paul and she decides to help Jessica to be cured to make Paul happier. She suggests an experimental treatment with shock to Dr. Maxwell (James Bell) but it fails. While talking to the maid Alma (Theresa Harris), she discovers that another woman was cured in a voodoo ceremony by a voodoo priest and she decides to use witchcraft to cure Jessica. However the natives believe that Jessica is a zombie that cannot be cured. When Betsy meets Paul and Wesley's mother Mrs. Rand (Edith Barrett), she finds that Jessica was the pivot of a fight between Paul and Wes and she believes that her daughter-in-law is a zombie.

"I Walked with a Zombie" is an ambiguous zombie movie directed by Jacques Tourneur. The plot is a family drama and the zombies in this movie are not like in George Romero's trilogy or "The Walking Dead", but related to voodoo in a Caribbean Island. There is a creepy atmosphere with a beautiful cinematography, the non-stop voodoo drums and the native Carrefour, but no gore, violent death or scream. The conclusion is ambiguous after the revelation of Mrs. Rand. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "A Morta-Viva" ("The Living Dead")


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