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The Plague of the Zombies (1966)

Approved | | Horror | 12 January 1966 (USA)
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Young workers are dying because of a mysterious epidemic in a little village in Cornwall. Doctor Thompson is helpless and asks professor James Forbes for help. The professor and his ... See full summary »

Director:

John Gilling

Writer:

Peter Bryan (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
André Morell ... Sir James Forbes
Diane Clare ... Sylvia Forbes
Brook Williams ... Dr. Peter Tompson
Jacqueline Pearce ... Alice Mary Tompson
John Carson ... Squire Clive Hamilton
Alexander Davion ... Denver (as Alex Davion)
Michael Ripper ... Sergeant Jack Swift
Marcus Hammond Marcus Hammond ... Tom Martinus
Dennis Chinnery Dennis Chinnery ... Constable Christian
Louis Mahoney ... Coloured Servant
Roy Royston Roy Royston ... Vicar
Ben Aris Ben Aris ... John Martinus
Tim Condren Tim Condren ... A young blood (as Tim Condron)
Bernard Barnsley Bernard Barnsley ... A young blood (as Bernard Egan)
Norman Mann ... A young blood
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Storyline

Young workers are dying because of a mysterious epidemic in a little village in Cornwall. Doctor Thompson is helpless and asks professor James Forbes for help. The professor and his daughter Sylvia travel to Thomson. Terrible things happen soon, beyond imagination or reality. Dead people are seen near an old, unused mine. Late people seem to live suddenly. Professor Forbes presumes that black magic is involved and someone has extraordinary power. He doesn't know how close he is: the dead become alive because of a magic voodoo-ritual, and so they must serve their master as mindless zombies... Written by Matthias Luehr <mluehr@htwm.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Only The Lord Of The Dead Could Unleash Them!

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 January 1966 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Zombies See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film takes place in August 1860. See more »

Goofs

Immediately after Alice's death, Jacqueline Pearce blinks. See more »

Quotes

Sir James Forbes: High-ate-ee is how he pronounces Haiti.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Amazing Stories: Mirror, Mirror (1986) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Hammer's only zombie movie is a winner.
16 February 2008 | by BA_HarrisonSee all my reviews

George Romero might have breathed life back into the zombie sub-genre with his classic 'Night Of The Living Dead' (1968), but I think he possibly owes a debt to Hammer's 1966 movie 'Plague Of The Zombies': his infamous flesh-eating cadavers bear a remarkable resemblance to Plague's (admittedly less ravenous) mouldy, shuffling corpses.

In Hammer's effective little shocker, André Morell is Sir James Forbes, a professor of medicine who travels to Cornwall (in the company of his daughter, Sylvia, played by Diane Clare) after receiving a strange missive from ex-student Peter Tompson. Now working as a GP in a remote part of the West country, Peter is completely baffled as to why his patients have suddenly started dropping like flies.

After investigating matters in the Cornish town, Sir James discovers that the victims are being killed and returned to life (through the power of voodoo) by nasty landed gent Squire Hamilton (John Carson), who is using the rotting automatons to work his supposedly abandoned tin mine.

Although it was originally released as a support feature for 'Dracula, Prince Of Darkness', Plague Of The Zombies is easily one of Hammer's finest efforts and essential viewing for fans of the living dead. The talented cast give some excellent performances (Morell, in particular, is great as the open-minded man of science who is quite prepared to embrace the notion of witchcraft), whilst director John Gilling ensures that the film rattles along at a fair pace, managing some pretty chilling set-pieces in the process: a creepy dream-sequence that sets the standards for corpses crawling from their graves; a shocking scene in which we meet our first walking dead; and a truly memorable moment that features the decapitation of a zombie by spade (come to think of it, maybe Mr. Raimi also owes a little of his success to this film).


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