Herk Harvey's macabre masterpiece gained a cult following through late night television and has been a midnight movie favorite for years.  Made by industrial filmmakers on a modest budget, Carnival of Souls was intended to have the "look of a Bergman" and "feel of a Cocteau," and succeeds with its oddball locations and spooky organ score.  Filmed in Lawrence, Kansas in 1962, with a really creepy Twilight Zone-style premise and some great black-and-white atmosphere. Wandering into a small town after an auto accident, to begin her new job as a church organist, young Mary Henry (Candace Hilligoss) begins to pick up strange vibes: none of the normal people in town seem to be able to see her, and she keeps being accosted by freakish pasty-faced types who seem to be dead on their feet. The nightmarish finale benefits from its one-of-a-kind "found" setting... an empty amusement park rising like a ghostly castle from the prairie landscape. 
This is a much less aggressive and violent film than George Romero's original Night of the Living Dead, but for sheer skin-crawling spookiness, it's in the same class.
Candace Hilligoss  as  Mary Henry
Frances Feist  as  Mrs. Thomas, the Landlady
Sidney Berger  as John Linden
Art Ellison  as  Minister
Stan Levitt  as  Dr. Samuels
Tom McGinnis  as  Organ Factory Boss
Cari Conboy  as  Lake Zombie

DIRECTOR:  Herk Harvey
WRITERS:  John Clifford, Herk Harvey
CINEMATOGRAPHY:  Maurice Prather
MUSIC:  Gene Moore
MAKEUP:  George Corn

Availability:  35mm, DVD
Date of Release:  1962
78 Minutes; 1.37/Black & White/Mono


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