Horror Rises from the Tomb (1973)

Back in Ye Witche Tymes a warlock and his wife are executed. Before he is decapitated he swears a curse and then they bury his head somewhere. Hundreds of years later his descendant and his pals decide to go look for the severed head, which is allegedly buried in his land.

It is difficult to review this movie because the version I watched was heavily censored, to the extent that the movie was nearly impossible to follow and also really dull. Apparently a horror/sex movie, the version I watched was more akin to a haunted house picture from the 1940s. There is a lot of slowly creeping down hallways, a lot of evil warlocks glaring menacingly at the camera, and way too much awful and totally ineffective organ music.

Having said this, the movie starts out very well. I'm a sucker for gritty, filthy medieval scenes in movies and Horror Rises from the Tomb begins with a great one, complete with guy reading aloud the warlock's crimes from a scroll. From there we get a seance scene that is pretty good but typical, and- the highlight of the movie- a great scene on a dark forest road featuring some great backwoods street justice.

Unfortunately once we get to the heart of the matter- digging up the head and then chaos in the castle- the movie sort of falls apart. Nothing much happens and pace slows to a crawl as characters that were never developed in the slightest are attacked, mind-controlled, and killed. And it is around this time that the organ music soundtrack starts to really get on your nerves.

The movie gets extra points for the semi-accurate title, what with the rising from the tomb and all. But I have a hard time calling what rises "horror," though I understand you'd have trouble selling tickets to the more accurately named Tedium Rises from the Tomb.

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