Day 28: Zombies on Broadway (1945)
Cast: Bela Lugosi as Professor Paul Renault
Wally Brown as Jerry Miles
Alan Carney as Mike Strager
Anne Jeffreys as Jean La Danse
Screenplay by Lawrence Kimble
Story by Robert Faber & Charles Newman
Directed by Gordon Douglas (Them!)
Plot: Press agents Jerry and Mike are sent to an island in search of some real zombies to help get some publicity for the opening of a new nightclub. They meet scientist Dr. Paul Renault who promises he can help but is that really what he’s up to? Add in a damsel in distress, an island dungeon and some zombies for a different type of jungle mystery.
Personal Thoughts: Lugosi finally returns to a main studio with this RKO Pictures release. He was once again plays a mad scientist, this time trying to recreate zombies. He does quite well in the limited role as this is really a comedy feature for Wally Brown and Alan Carney. They were low-rent Abbott and Costello wannabes but were funny enough. There is some jungle native scenes and one black face sequence that is out-of-place today and may be hard for some to watch. It’s not overly offensive and fits in with the plot but watchers be warned. A fun rainy day afternoon matinee type of flick.
- With the help of some star power and a low budget, the movie turned a profit for RKO Pictures. This lead to the studio reuniting the cast for Genius at Work (1946).
- The jungle scenes were filmed on the same sets used for the Tarzan film series.
- Carney and Brown were briefly RKOs version of Abbott and Costello. This was their next to last film together.
- Watch the clip on YouTube
- Karloff and Lugosi Horror Classics DVD set