Unfunny Business: Bela Lugosi in ZOMBIES ON BROADWAY (1945)


cracked rear viewer

wally-brown-mainBela Lugosi has always been one of my favorite actors. The master of the macabre sent shivers down my spine in such classics as DRACULA, WHITE ZOMBIE, and THE RAVEN.  But by the 1940s, morphine addicted and desperate for work, Lugosi took acting jobs wherever he could find them. He always gave his best in whatever he did, even in low budget nonsense like THE DEVIL BAT (a personal favorite of mine). In fact, if it wasn’t for Lugosi’s presence, most of these films wouldn’t be worth watching today. ZOMBIES ON BROADWAY is one of them.

Wally Brown and Alan Carney were thrown together as RKO’s answer to Abbott & Costello. The two vaudeville veterans have no chemistry between them whatsoever. Yet the studio continued to team them in a series of Grade B comedies. ZOMBIES ON BROADWAY was their next to last together and if it wasn’t for  Bela, there’d be…

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