6.6/10
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Dead & Buried (1981)

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.

Director:

Gary Sherman (as Gary A. Sherman)

Writers:

Jeff Millar (story), Alex Stern (story) | 3 more credits »
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Farentino ... Sheriff Dan Gillis
Melody Anderson ... Janet Gillis
Jack Albertson ... William G. Dobbs
Dennis Redfield ... Ron
Nancy Locke ... Linda (as Nancy Locke Hauser)
Lisa Blount ... Girl on the Beach / Nurse Lisa
Robert Englund ... Harry
Bill Quinn ... Ernie
Michael Currie Michael Currie ... Herman
Christopher Allport ... George Le Moyne / Freddie
Joseph G. Medalis Joseph G. Medalis ... Doctor (as Joe Medalis)
Macon McCalman ... Ben
Lisa Marie ... Hitchhiker
Estelle Omens Estelle Omens ... Betty
Barry Corbin ... Phil
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Storyline

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 | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A new dimension in horror... See more »

Genres:

Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 October 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Look Alive See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$216,166, 15 November 1981

Gross USA:

$216,166, 15 November 1981
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Gary Sherman intentionally chose foggy weather conditions, in which to film, while on-location in California. The film's setting is suppose to be Maine, and the locations looked most like northern New England when the weather was foggy. In addition, Sherman liked the ominous mood the gloomy weather created. See more »

Goofs

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 »

Quotes

[repeated line]
Ernie: Welcome to Potters Bluff!
See more »

Alternate Versions

Even though the film was shown uncut on cinema in Sweden, a very unique decision back then due to the hard policy on violence, the Transfer rental VHS release is cut by several minutes. See more »

Connections

References Night of the Living Dead (1968) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
creepiness trumps gore in this unusual 'zombie' movie
24 January 2010 | by MisterWhiplashSee all my reviews

Gary Sherman's film Dead & Buried, from a script by Alien writers Ron Shusset and (the late) Dan O'Bannon, is a strange creature of a movie. It's meant to reel in the horror movie crowd, but it's for a crowd of another time period. That is, at least, the filmmaker's intention, and it's the kind of horror movie that might have been made in the 40's (maybe Val Lewton would've produced it, though probably never showing a death on screen), and has a mad mortician, calmly and chillingly played by Jack ("Grandpa Joe" from Willy Wonka) Albertson, bringing back people from the dead and having those dead go after tourists or passerbys who have the dumb luck to travel into town.

Sometimes the gore is meant to be emphasized, like with the death of the fisherman or the doctor who gets acid poured on him. The latter of these is a terrible scene, not just because Stan Winston wasn't involved in the effect (you can tell), but because it's done too much and the camera lingers a little too long. Dead & Buried is helped by it being surreal: the opening scene where the guy is photographing on the beach, comes across the woman and starts to take pictures "for Playboy" and then is overcome by a horde of people also flashing pictured and filming and is killed by fire, is something out of a pure nightmare (you almost expect someone to wake up, but no one does). When it sticks to this dead-undead thing, of the hints at witchcraft and the eerie performances by the Sheriff's wife and some of the townspeople like Robert Englund, make it worthwhile.

Dead & Buried is not what you expect, which is a good and not-so-good thing. It's low-budget and atmospheric, and its ending is a bit of a WTF twist that seems unnecessary. But there's a lot of interest here, a lot of weird effects with cameras and crowds of the undead. Just don't go expecting the usual flesh and guts show, despite what the film's own distributors thought at the time.


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