Remembering King of the Zombies

It’s been awhile since I reviewed a zombie movie. I got a bit reminiscent when I saw King of the Zombies on TCM channel. I’ve seen this movie a number of times and couldn’t pass up another viewing. Here’s what it’s about:

“During World War 2, a small plane off the south coast of America is low on fuel and blown off course by a storm. Guided by a faint radio signal, they crashland on an island. The passenger, his manservant and the pilot take refuge in a mansion owned by a doctor. The easily-spooked manservant soon becomes convinced the mansion is haunted by zombies and ghosts. Exploring, the 3 find a voodoo ritual in the cellar, where the doctor is trying to acquire war intelligence by transferring personalities into his zombies. But the interruption causes the zombies to turn on their creator.”

I enjoyed it as much as every other time! By today’s standards, it’s cheesy horror. While I watched I wondered if people were at all afraid of the traditional voodoo zombies, although this movie is intended to mix horror and comedy.

Mantan Moreland should have gotten top billing. I loved him growing up in the Charlie Chan movies. He really is the star of King of the Zombies. In fact, if he were alive today, I think he’d be drawing viewers to the theater more than most other comedy star. He could just stand in place and pop out those eyes and I’d laugh my ass off.

Anyway, back to the movie review and stereotypes. What you have to love most about this movie is that it’s not typical for the time. While there were blatant stereotypes for African Americans back then, Mantan Moreland greatly tops the white stars in brain power. We can watch old movies today, knowing that blacks were portrayed as they were, although not to excuse it, and still enjoy the movies. Well, at least I hope we can because we humans need constant reminders of past stupidities or we repeat history over and over again.

Growing up, I watched countless old horror movies and I hope that young people continue to have an interest in watching them. After all, they are easier than every to access via the Internet. King of the Zombies is one that should never be lost in the archives. Watch this one!

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Please leave zombie movie suggestions in the comments.
I prefer movies rated below a 4 on IMDB.

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