- H4 2012
La Muerte Viviente / Isle of the Snake People
Snake People / Isle of the Living Dead / Cult of the Dead
Luis Enrique Vergara for Azteca, Parasol, Instar
directed by Juan Ibáñez, Jack Hill
starring Boris Karloff, Julissa, Carlos East, Rafael Bertrand, Yolanda Montez (as Tongolele), Quintín Bulnes, Santanón, Martinique, Judy Carmichael, Yol Duhalt
written by Juan Ibáñez, Jack Hill, Luis Enrique Vergara
Karloff's final Mexican foursome
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Police captain Lafiche (Rafael Bertrand) & moral crusader Annabelly
Vandenberg (Julissa) come to a small Carribean Island to put a few things
right, most notably the laid back, alcoholic chief of police Wilhelm (Carlos
East), but, as Wilhelm and plantation owner Van Molder (Boris Karloff) -
incidently Annabella's uncle - tell them, there are some things outsiders just
won't understand ... & the natives' voodoo rituals, complete with zombies
& everything, are one of them.
But while Wilhelm has come to accept
things as they are & Van Molder is even trying to use some voodoo practices
to his own endes, Lafiche is determined to break down the voodoo cult &
defeat its highpriest, the so-called Damballah (even though the identity of the
Damballah is known to nobody).
However, when Lafiche repeatedly interrupts
voodoo ceremonies, he soon becomes the center of attention of the
voodoo-practitioners himself & they soon put some hex on him, causing him
to see snakes everywhere. When Lafiche however remains undaunted, the cult even
foes so far as to let some of their zombies loose on local people.
Lafiche learns the identity of the Damballah from a man cast out form the cult,
& to little surprise it is Van Molder himself, who did need some cheap
plantation workers - zombies - & while at it had some weird plans about
world domination as well. Lafiche persuades Wilhelm to accompany him to the
next voodoo ceremony with some explosives to end everything then & there,
& Wilhelm needs little persuasion since the cult has kidnapped Annabella,
intending to use her as a virgin sacrifice. Of course in the end Annabella is
saved, & the cult is destroyed, but Lafiche has to give his life blowing
everything with his explosives' bels, though at least he takes Van Molder with
A film like this is supposed to rely heavily on atmosphere, but
neither the meager budget nor the directors' abilities did really allow much in
way of creating any, so the film has a rather crude look to it ... which even
works for the movie to a point, inasmuch as it gives the film a very elemental
harshness. Of course that soesn't mean to say it is a good movie - it's rather
bad actually on a pure quality level - but its amusing pulp horror.