Thursday, May 8, 2008

"I Walked With A Zombie" (1943)

I Walked WIth A Zombie
Like other films directed by Jacques Tourneur and produced by Val Lewton, especially “Cat People,” this one excels in great black-and-white visuals and cinematography. Tourneur uses very atmospheric techniques to give the film a dark, brooding, moody feel that enhances the story he is telling. He uses light and shadow to create an unsettling mood and sense of dread. It's amazing how something as simple as a shadow cast across a wall is used to so effectively create an atmosphere of dread. Sound and music are also used to enhance the tension—the native drums and singing really bring the world of Caribbean voodoo to life.

When most people think about zombie movies, they think of films typical of George Romero or Wes Craven. This film instead focuses more on the voodoo aspect of zombie lore. Probably the most memorable character is the native zombie Carrefour, played by Darby Jones. With his skeletal figure and protruding eyes, he is easily the creepiest looking zombie ever filmed.

Excerpt from "Schermoscuro" Vol.I
"SCHERMOSCURO" Vol. I by Francesco Francavilla


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