What’s worse than a low-budget 1970s’ zombie made in Mexico? A sequel to a low-budget 1970s’ zombie made in Mexico. Somehow, probably because of a pact with evil spirits, the 1971 schlockfest Tombs of the Blind Dead actually produced three sequels! Not able to stomach all four, I had to draw the line at watching just the first two, but I have a pretty good feeling that was enough.
Like Tombs, “Return of the Blind Dead” is about evil knights called Templars who return from the grave to hunt the living. Because they have no eyes, they hunt by sound, following the screams of their victims. In theory, that’s an interesting idea for a film, but it just doesn’t work for so very many reasons.
First of all, the film is not really a sequel. The origin story of the Templars is significantly changed, and they no longer need a catalyst to awaken from their slumber. No characters from the first film return, although leading lady Lone Fleming stars in both films, but in completely different roles. The bulk of the story is actually lifted directly from Night of the Living Dead The majority of the movie involves a mismatched group of people stuck inside a house with zombies surrounding it. Sound familiar?
There are many other reasons this film doesn’t work, including slow pacing, bad dubbing, skeleton hand puppets, and an actor who looks just like Stephen King. Rather than list everything wrong with this film, I’ll summarize: sometimes you need to watch a really bad movie, and this one will do perfectly. Otherwise, avoid it like Mexican tap water.