The Walking Dead (1936)

Article #142 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 8-5-2001
Posting date: 12-19-2001

A scientist brings back to life a man framed for the murder of a judge. The man has returned to life with the knowledge of the men who framed him, and confronts each one of them, resulting in their accidental deaths.

This movie had an enormous impact on me when I saw it as a child, and time has not dampened that impact in the least. Though some people may not care for the religious themes in this movie, I think they are what give the movie its power; it’s one of the only movies I’ve seen dealing with the resurrection of the dead that really cares about what the subject experienced during the time he was dead. Karloff is outstanding in this movie, especially after he is resurrected: I love the lost and confused look that goes over his face after each confrontation, as if he himself doesn’t even know what’s going on. I also noticed this time around that before each confrontation, all the friends and protectors of the one he’s going to meet seem to vanish or have unexpected reasons to not hang around, almost as if outside forces are guiding their actions. The scene where Karloff plays the piano while turning his gaze on each of the men who framed him is a classic. It’s a shame this movie has had no official release on VHS or DVD; I consider it a real classic that seems destined to be forgotten.


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