The Return of the Evil Dead (1973)

THE RETURN OF THE EVIL DEAD (1973)
aka El ataque de los muertos sin ojos, Return of the Blind Dead
Article 3244 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 5-7-2010
Posting Date: 7-2-2010
Directed by Amando de Ossorio
Featuring Tony Kendall, Fernando Sancho, Esperanza Roy
Country: Spain
What it is: Blind Dead Templars sequel

A small village is holding the annual celebration of the anniversary of when the villagers rose up and killed the evil Templars that had terrorized them for ages. What they don’t know is that it is now time for the Templars to rise from the dead and seek their revenge.

I first saw this movie as part of a double-sided DVD that featured TOMBS OF THE BLIND DEAD (the first movie of the series) on side one, and this one on side two. The original movie was letterboxed and subtitled on the DVD; this one was full-screen and dubbed, which made it seem a little chintzier from square one. It’s not a direct sequel to the original; it takes the basic concept, makes a few changes, and builds a different story around it. This one basically borrows the premise of NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD; the last half of the movie has most of the major cast members barricaded in a church that is under siege by the Templars. I’m less impressed with this movie than the original; it just seems to lack that sense of dread the first movie engendered, and we actually see too much of the dead this time around. Still, there are some effective and moody moments, and there is at least one real shocking moment, albeit one that involves the actions of the trapped humans rather than the carnage of the Templars; it’s truly shocking to find out what the final action the mayor takes in order to get to the car and make his escape. Whatever its flaws, it’s still fairly clear that the whole Blind Dead series was Amanda de Ossorio’s most inspired creation.

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