Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Isle of the Snake People A.K.A. La Muerte Viviente A.K.A. Cult of the Dead A.K.A. Snake People (1971)

An American horror directed by Juan Ibanez, starring Boris Karloff and Julissa.
An authoritarian captain and a temperance crusader arrive on an island where voodoo is being practiced. The captain is trying to reform the police force which consists of one alcoholic and the temperance worker is the neice of a scientist on the island whom she wants to sign her anti-saloon paperwork. The teetotaling neice falls in love with the drunkard and people are being turned into zombies.
This was more comedy than horror. They hand-held the camera more than they used tripods, creating a tense atmosphere with shaky camera-work. The height of comedic greatness was the scene in which the neice is reading from a book and the policeman is trying to hit on her. Plot seemed to be an afterthought, only considered when shooting was complete for scenes featuring the scantly clad priestess dancing in rituals and closeups of snakes. So bad it's good, I laughed more while watching this than I did during the entire set of comedy films that preceeded my horror section. I rate it o.k. because it's a terrible film, but I found it funny.

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