Friday, November 9, 2012

Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things: 35 Years Laughing to Death

Bob Clark gets a whole lotta lip action this time of year. After all Christmas is coming and he directed two of the most iconic Christmas flicks in the last fifty. A Christmas Story and Black Christmas. Obviously Mr. Clark is versatile, and no other film could quite illustrate that as well as Children Shouldn't Play with Dead things. No Santa Claus here, but plenty of overt witchcraft, undead zombie killers and black comedy to fill up an hour and half of your day.

Synopsis from VCI:

Led by a mean-spirited director, Alan (Alan Ormsby), a theater troupe travels by boat to a small island graveyard for buried criminals. Using a grimoire, Alan begins a séance to raise the dead. The group finds more than they bargained for when the dead return from their graves, forcing the troupe to take refuge in an old abandoned caretaker’s house. Can they stay put until daylight against the undead onslaught, or do they flee into the pitch black night? Will anyone survive? ….Muhah hahahh!
You may not be intrigued by the zombie make up or the acting or the production value. Hell, the quality of this release ain't that great. None of them can be. The film hasn't stood the test of time and even restoring it would fail miserably given the print's current state of duress. You'll watch this movie to show your kids on Halloween. Indie filmmakers will watch it to see how the old timers made a cheap zombie movie and a quick buck. Commentary track, making of feature, music videos (yes... music videos!... like MTV). It's a nice package for the fan of the film (again, don't go sniffing around for a Blu-ray release any time soon).

As a film itself Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things has a superb title and if you can get through the first hour, you might even find some horrific elements to keep you gore whores in check. The overdramatic acting and low sound quality has kept me from being a diehard fan since I first watched it back on VHS. You think there would be a way to actually improve on the quality of the audio from the magnetic taped version I saw years ago. Not so. This release would be good to for folks looking to complete their collection of Bob Clark films or for people who prefer this cover art to the more overt screen shot cover with the zombies rising from the dead.

You can pick up Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things HERE. Again, not for folks who have a DVD copy already, but if it's missing from your collection this is the version to buy. Exhume yourself.

Make sure to check out the other great VCI horror titles HERE.

All I gotta say is, you better love that beard and that pipe, ALAN! Let's go raise the dead using pentagrams and words we found on the back of cereal boxes and then make up our zombies with dried play dough. Dig?


Tell 'em Benjamin Clark sent ya.

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