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Zombie Flesh Eaters

  • Release Date: 01-12-1980
  • Vipco Catalogue Number: VIP001/VIP024
  • Director: Lucio Fulci
  • Writers: Elisa Briganti, Dardano Sacchetti
  • Actors: Tisa Farrow, Ian McCulloch, Richard Johnson, Al Cliver
  • Storyline:
    Zombie is found aboard a boat off the New York coast which belongs to do a famous scientist. Peter West,a journalist, travels to the Antilles with Ann, the daughter of the scientist. On the way, they meet with with Brian, a ethnologist, and Susan. When they arrive at Matul Island, they find Dr. Menard, and discover a terrifying diease which is turning the Islanders into horrifying Zombies which devour human flesh and seem indestructable....

  • Country: Italy
  • Language: English
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When the earth spits out the dead.....They will return to tear the flesh of the living.

VIPCO’s premiere release in December 1980 was the infamous Zombie Flesh Eaters (VIP001), one of the most influential zombie-themed films to emerge from the genre, and certainly one of the more celebrated works from its director, Lucio Fulci – a filmmaker who was no stranger to controversy, having filmed no less than two other films (The House By the Cemetery and The Beyond) which were eponymously branded as “video nasties” during Britain’s darkest hour, then levelled upon its video trade.

Survivors’ regular Ian McCulloch, in a role that led to his participation in two other Italian-produced films (Marino Girolami’s Zombie Holocaust and Luigi Cozzi’s Contamination), stars as Peter, a journalist who travels to the island of Matul with Ann – a woman desperately trying to locate her father there. In search of a fresh scoop, Peter makes a terrifying discovery and learns of a horrifying disease which re-animates several recently deceased islanders into living corpses, whom seek to devour the living...

This first release by VIPCO, having undergone numerous cuts, was actually the original cinema version which was missing nearly two minutes of gory highlights. It wasn’t long before its much celebrated “Strong Uncut Version” appeared however; ‘back by popular demand’ on our rental shelves, complete with corresponding sleeve stickers boldly proclaiming its uncut status. It was this extremely gory November 1981 re-release, alongside a handful of other similarly contentious video titles, which landed VIPCO in hot water. Effectively, anyone found trading with this latter release might be subject to prosecution under UK law – a ruling that could lead to a prison sentence!

The label was quickly (and deservedly) identified within the trade as something of a ‘hot potato’ – a company that introduced no less than seven potentially obscene video films to the UK – and one that peddled the similarly tainted film works’ of Abel Ferrara’s The Driller Killer, the re-edited Shogun Assassin – which combined the two Lone Wolf films’ Sword of Vengeance and Baby Cart at the River Styx, Ulli Lommel’s The Bogey Man, Andy Warhol’s Frankenstein, Tobe Hooper’s Death Trap and J.S. Cardone’s The Slayer.

The wheels of taste continue to turn however and, bizarrely enough – and despite all the controversy that surrounded this initial VIPCO release – Fulci’s Zombie Flesh Eaters is now deemed suitable viewing, and is currently available in its complete “Strong Uncut Version”. Meanwhile other contentious film works’ – such as Tom Six’ The Human Centipede II – today receive the full adverse wrath of the BBFC’s tendencies of control and to govern the ever-increasing levels of screen violence, which can legally be viewed on home video.

Please find the original screenplay below courtesy of Jay Slater

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Written by Administrator Last modified on Wednesday, 23 July 2014 19:27

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