SUGAR HILL (1974)
Article 1786 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 2-3-2006
Posting Date: 7-3-2006
Directed by Paul Maslansky
Featuring Marki Bey, Robert Quarry, Don Pedro Colley
A black woman takes revenge on a mob boss (who killed her boyfriend) by hooking up with a voodoo priestess to conjure up Baron Samedi and his zombie minions and sending them out to kill.
Now this one is just plain goofy. This cross between blaxploitation and horror is about as funky as you can get (for a PG-rated movie anyway) and the zombie victims die most horrible deaths (for a PG-rated movie that is). It’s also incredibly dumb, utterly predictable, and the movie largely unfolds as a series of cliches that follow up each other with the speed of falling dominoes. As a horror movie, it’s a washout, but as an unintentional comedy, it’s pretty entertaining. Most of the acting is pretty bad, but Don Pedro Colley seems to be having a lot of fun with the role of Baron Samedi, and fans of the Count Yorga movies will be glad to see Robert Quarry on hand as the mob boss whose men start dying in horrible ways. I don’t know how Baron Samedi was able to find so many zombies that all died from freak pinball machine accidents (which is the best explanation I can give as to why their eyes are like they are). The funniest line comes from the mob henchman who, upon being lifted up by the zombie minions to be tossed into a pigpen of starving carnivorous hogs, turns to Sugar Hill and asks “You’re not going to do anything funny, are you?”