Monday, October 20, 2008

THE UNDEAD - Ronald Stein & Mel Welles - "Screams From The Grave" (1957)

"The Undead" is A Classic Roger Corman film and a perfect Halloween treat for all you freaks! This is one of my favorite posters of all time and as was typical of a lot of Corman movies, the poster is one helluva lot better and more exciting than the movie!

"The Undead"

The cast of characters, and I do mean characters, reads like a virtual who's who of Corman stalwart players!! To start with you've got Richard Devon with eyebrows and a look that no one can forget as Satan in the flesh!!!

Val Dufour as Quintus Ratcliff (now that's a serious handle!) puts Pamela Duncan as lady of the night Diana Love, under!!!

You're getting very sleepy!!! She goes on a mind journey back to medieval times and finds herself in deep trouble being as she's a witch that is about to be executed!!!!!

Pamela has to hide from her tormentors, and she ends up in a coffin with a corpse played by none other than Tabonga's creator, Paul Blaisdell!!

Pretty much the first person Diana who is now known as Helene meets, is Smolkin the gravedigger, played by the fabulous Mel Welles!! Smolkin likes to sing as he works and a vast part of the music is his tortuous offkey rendering of standard tunes using his own offbeat lyrics and rhymes! It's really Great stuff!!!

Little guy Billy Barty plays "The Imp!"

The strikingly attractive Allison Hayes plays Livia, who is also a witch. When the camera catches Allison just right, she is as beautiful as any woman on earth!!! Here she is, looking stunning as she is about to enter the local pub, "Gabriel's Horn!"

Allison and all-time good sport and massive member of the Corman players, Bruno VeSota as Scroop the innkeeper!!

What a pair!!!! Allison walks around the whole movie with that one strap down!! Works for me!!!

As they disappear, Allison & Billy poof into a couple of bats left over from "It Conqured The World" and created by the master Paul Blaisdell!! Roger the Great Re-cycler!

Allison needs a head for the big upcoming spell and show, Bruno doesn't exactly volunteer, but does eventually give in!

Allison was feeling pretty proud of herself after lopping off Bruno's head with an axe!!!

Meanwhile, Mel as the real star of this movie, Smolkin, waxes poetic!! I just read his interview with Tom Weaver again, and he really enjoyed working with this fine group of folks!!

The crazy end of the music you'll hear is from this freeform modern dance of death!! Not as good as "She-Demons" or "Manos" but quite insane just the same!!

Even the pre "Bucket Of Blood" Richard Miller shows up!! This time as Leper Dick!! Unfortunately the Devil marks him for eternity, but at least his skin clears up!! I personally know a few teenagers who would sell their soul to have their skin clear up!!

Enough running around, it's time to face death and get this show over with!!!!! Give Pamela some credit too, she also had to do the 'get inside the coffin with the dead body' scene earlier in the film, and even though she's about to lose her head, she's still looking good and quite assured right here!!

What can I say? It's Roger Corman all the way including some music from none other than Ron Stein, one more time!!

2 comments:

belle dee said...

I wish they would put this out on DVD. My VHS copy isn't going to last forever!

Eegah!! & Tabonga! said...

Belle,
DVD copies can be found on the internet, but it's always hard to vouch for the quality!

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