Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, October 29, 2009


BLACK MOON (1934). Director: Roy William Neill.

"The natives are restless."

A wife and mother, Juanita Lane (Dorothy Burgess), becomes a little too involved with the voodoo culture on the island of San Christopher to the point where she's prepared to sacrifice her own child. People around her, such as a telegraph operator and the child's nurse, Anna (Eleanor Wesselhoeft) are murdered. There are interesting elements to the movie to be sure, but despite all the activity and running around, it generates more tedium than thrills or horror. Fay Wray is secretary Gail Hamilton, and Jack Holt is Juanita's husband. The movie is inherently racist, but at least Clarence Muse portrays "Lunch" McClaren, a sympathetic and likable black character. Ruva, the sinister voodoo lady, is portrayed by Madame Sul-Te-Wan.

Verdict: A possible cure for insomnia. * 1/2.

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