Home 1980s Burial Ground: The Nights of Terror (1980) aka The Zombie Dead

Burial Ground: The Nights of Terror (1980) aka The Zombie Dead

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The earth shall tremble…. graves shall open…. they shall come among the living as messengers of death and there shall be the nigths of terror…. “Profecy of the Black Spider”

Directed by Andrea Bianchi

Reviewed by Deep Red

No, I haven’t misspelled “nights” or “prophecy”, see film. Aka Zombie 3 aka Zombi horror. Andrea Bianchi also directed the giallo Strip Nude for Your Killer (Nude per l’assassino) (1975), a big favourite of mine.

Italian zombie film to beat all zombie films? Well, there’s some stiff competition (no pun intended). This has to be seen fully uncut, make sure that’s the only one version you see. It probably was influenced by Lucio Fulci’s Zombi 2 (1979) but what  Andrea Bianchi did here is easily as good as any Fulci or Romero zombie film and zombie fans need to check it out.

A professor (Raimondo Barbieri) studying a crypt is attacked by zombies. Three couples arrive at a mansion at the professor’s invitation, one couple, George (Roberto Caporali) and Evelyn (Mariangela Giordano), has a son, Michael (a young boy played by adult Peter Bark). They all soon find themselves being attacked as zombies besiege the mansion. Desperately they board the place up but can they survive the night?

The zombie makeup is exquisite, real maggots and wriggling worms are always a nice touch. These are some grimy-looking sons o’ bitches, I shit you not. The soundtrack is massively over the top and all the better for it. It’s pretty much zombie action all the way and from smashed zombie skulls to burning walking corpses (and a lot more!) everything is on the money. This is some sick, nasty goodness. One particular bit made me gag, but gag in a good way! Relished it! Awesome conclusion too.

Yes, some scenes have a familiarity about them, Zombie films do, but it’s also done with gruesome aplomb. I often think there’s a certain kind of cinematography unique to horror films, the overall look of a film as well as individual scenes, and this film looks right, just like say Dawn of the Dead (1978) or Zombi 2 (1979), and therefore it feels right. As well as checking this out uncut, essential, I would say get the best possible quality you can find too, a film like this deserves to be seen at its very best.

When I think of the shit they churn out these days I find it hard to believe things got so bad. Never mind though, I can always watch films like this. The old ones are the best, hands down. Genius.

Also stars Gianluigi Chirizzi as Mark, Karin Well as Janet, Simone Mattioli as James, Antonella Antinori as Leslie, Anna Valente as Kathleen and Claudio Zucchet as Nicholas.TheZombieDead