Le Notti del terrore (1980) from Tuna

This Italian zombie splatter film has been known variously as Burial Ground, Night of Terror (UK) and Zombie Horror. The current dubbed Region One release is called Burial Ground: The Nights of Terror. It has virtually no plot, but its proponents, of which there are many, think that is a good thing. The film has a little sex, and a whole lot of gore. Mariangela Giordano provides the only exposure in this film, which includes full frontal, buns, and several breast shots, including one where her son turned zombie eats one of her breasts. The part of her son was played by a short 25 year old unknown, since the censors wouldn't permit minors to appear in these films. Frankly, he was the creepiest character in the film.

Three couples are invited to a villa by a professor who wants to share his recent discoveries. These include how to reanimate and release zombies, which he has done by the time they arrive, and is already himself a zombie. In one brilliant moment, a character actually said, "They are really slow, we can stay away from them." This concept could have made for a very interesting twist on the normal zombie theme, but the mindless slow-motion zombies out-think and out-run the living characters.

The director, in an interview on the DVD, says he expected nothing in the way of popularity from this film. It was shot on a very low budget in 4 weeks, and only had one experienced cast member - Giordano. She has 69 credits, mostly in Euro-gore films.


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DVD info from Amazon.

  • widescreen format

Among genre fans, this is a cult classic, but is a weak film by any objective standard. To illustrate, a couple is running away from zombies in the garden. She steps in a bear trap (the bears must have been eating the daisies). We see her foot caught, then her husband trying to open the trap, then her calling to him that she stepped in a trap, then him running to her to free her. I don't know if you would call that sequence a continuity or editing faux pas, but, to me, it was really jarring.  

The Critics Vote

  • there are only genre specialty reviews online.

The People Vote ...

IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, this film is a C based on the cult following. Genre fanatics will love it, but there is nothing for anyone else here.

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