Thursday, October 8, 2015

Countdown to Halloween 2015 - Counting Down the Monsters #8 - Carrefour

I used to watch zombie movies. A LOT. These days, though, I just don't care much about the newer stuff. I think maybe watching so many of them for my old podcast might have burned me out a bit, and I had some things happen in my personal life that drove me away from a lot of modern horror anyway.

That said, I still like a good black-and-white zombie flick. And I Walked With a Zombie (dir. Jacques Tourneur) is one of the best. I first saw this film before I got into podcasting, but I can't remember exactly when. I do know the first time I started taking the movie seriously was, again, when I was asked to appear on the B-Movie Cast. I was taken with the film. It's beautifully produced and wonderfully acted. The story works on a number of levels, and there are so many things to see and learn in the film. I did talk about the movie with writer Paul McComas on my own Monster Kid Radio podcast (here and here), and, honestly, I can keep talking about it on any podcast or other platform.

Darby Jones appears as one of the most iconic zombies in all of film history in this film. As Carrefour, he has little screen time. The time he spends on screen, however, is so captivating, so moody . . . SO GOOD.

Jones would come back as the zombie Kalaga in Zombies on Broadway (dir. Gordon Douglas), but he's not nearly as effective here. I blame the make-up being slightly askew and the direction just not being as tight. Even the presence of the master Bela Lugosi doesn't help (although it is interesting to see Lugosi in another zombie film after the ground breaking White Zombie (dir. Victor Halperin)).

Darby Jones doesn't need anyone to help him stand out as a zombie in I Walked With a Zombie. He just needs a bit of shadow, a touch of atmosphere, and some loving cinematography, all of which I Walked With a Zombie provides.

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