Alternate titles : "The Gates of Hell", "The Fear", "Fear in the City of the Living Dead", "Paura Nella Citta Dei Morti Viventi", "Twilight of the Dead", "Frayeurs La Paura".

Tagline : "From the bowels of the Earth, they rose to collect the living"

City of the Living DeadThere's trouble in store for the townsfolk of Dunwich, when they discover the town is built on a gateway to Hell. After the local priest, Father Thomas, hangs himself and all sorts of weird things to start happening.

Zombies appear, terrorising the local bar fly's and chasing people around their homes, before finally squishing their brains and just disappearing again. Peoples window pains suddenly shatter inwards and sprayed with showers of maggots, paintings drip blood, and the late Father Thomas keeps popping up here and there, causing locals to bleed from their eyes before dieing by vomiting up their intestines.

Mary Woodhouse (Katherine MacColl), a clairvoyant, arrives at Dunwich after foreseeing these events during a seance. Aided by newspaper reporter Peter (Christopher George) and local couple Jerry and Sandra (played by Italian horror regulars Carlo De Mejo and Janet agren), they attempt to re-close the hell gate before the arrival of all saints day. Knowing that if they fail, all hell will literally break loose.

Now the plot may seem a little confusing here, but then that's par for the course being a Lucio Fulci film, who regularly excelled at producing surrealist, low-budget absurdity, but I seriously think he must have been smoking something peculiar when he envisioned this. The story, for the most part, makes little or no sense and is only saved by the phenomenal amount of gore during some of the scenes, most of which was unfortunately cut by the UK censors for its original video release (has since been re-issued uncut though I'm pleased to say).

Borrowing plot points from Hammer films "Plague of the Zombies" (particularly the scene where the zombies styart to burn for no reason), this should NOT be confused with any of George Romero's "Living Dead" movies, which this film was obviously titled to cash in on. If you enjoyed Fulci's earlier "House by the Cemetery" you may quite like this one, but if you detest tacky, low-budget horror, particularly those that don't make sense, you may wish to give this one a miss.

Overall Marks :

Terrifying Trivia

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