DENNIS SCHWARTZ Movie Reviews

CHILDREN SHOULDN'T PLAY WITH DEAD THINGS (REVENGE OF THE LIVING DEAD) (director/writer: Bob Clark; screenwriter: Alan Ormsby; cinematographer: Jack McGowan; editor:  Gary Goch; music:  Carl Zittrer; cast: Alan Ormsby (Alan), Valerie Mamches (Val), Jeffrey Gillen (Jeff), Anya Ormsby (Anya), Paul Cronin (Paul), Jane Daly (Terry), Robert Philip (Emerson), Roy Engleman (Roy), Alecs Baird (Caretaker), Seth Sklarey (Orville Dunworth), Curtis Bryant (Ghoul), Bruce Solomon (Winns); Runtime: 87; MPAA Rating: PG; producers: Gary Goch/Bob Clark; VCI Entertainment; 1973)

"A great title, but a lousy film."

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

A great title, but a lousy film. Director Bob Clark ("Black Christmas"/"Turk 182"/"Porkys"), in his feature film debut, helms this overvalued weird cult film, that he co-writes with the horror/comedy spoof's obnoxious star and make-up man Alan Ormsby.

Alan (Alan Ormsby) is an insurance salesman and the leader of a struggling theater troupe that goes by boat to a graveyard reserved only for criminals on a remote small island and conducts a seance to give the theater folks a night of fun. When Alan gets over trying to scare the actors with a fake pitch to the dead, he finds a grimoire - an old book of spells. He thereby uses dried baby's blood to raise after midnight the corpse of the recently buried Orville Dunworth (Seth Sklarey). Eventually the dead man awakens as an undead and soon so do the rest of the corpses in the cemetery. The undead dine on Alan's previous two ghoul pretender pranksters, Emerson and Roy ( Robert Philip & Roy Engleman), and the frightened troupe--the playful Jeff (Jeff Gillen), the skittish Paul (Paul Cronin), the sexy Terry (Jane Daly),  the fragile Anya (Anya Ormsby) and the sorceress Val (Valerie Mamches)--at first party in the abandoned house of the caretaker to celebrate the pranks and then stay there overnight in the hope they can survive the real gory undead attack until daybreak.

The acting is beyond bad, the sophomoric story is beyond inane, the futile directing ranks in Ed Wood territory and, if not a stoner, the entertainment value is as close to nil as you can get.

REVIEWED ON 7/13/2014       GRADE: C-

Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"

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