Reviews
Le Lac des Morts Vivants (1980) half brain
(France)

Alternate Titles:

El Lago de los Muertos Vivientes
The Lake of the Living Dead
Zombie Lake


If gratuitous nudity is the hallmark of a bad movie desperately trying to sell itself, then Le Lac des Morts Vivants (or as I saw it, Zombie Lake) is screaming "I SUCK!" The budget for this film must have gone into the flamethrower, because they certainly didn't spend it on makeup or good actors. The zombies are Nazi soldiers with green face paint, which still might not be that bad if it didn't crack and peel in the middle of scenes. There is one scene where a zombie is supposedly gnawing on a woman's neck, and when he raises his head, his green "skin" is hanging in flaps off his cheek, revealing the normal skin underneath.

The story is set in a small French town where the villagers killed some Nazis during the war and dumped them in the lake. The zombies lurk in the bottom of the lake until unwary swimmers come along (usually nude, unless you see the censored version), and then they rise up and attack. Eventually they leave the lake, rampaging through the village. There are a couple of badly thought out subplots, the main one being that one of the zombies left behind a daughter that is still somehow only 12 years old 35 years later. Either that or the local villagers invented a time machine so they could travel forward to 1980 to steal some clothes and cars.

When the acting isn't wooden it's cheesy, the effects are horrible, and the dialogue is inane. I can say that this movie made me laugh a few times, and I can also say that it has no pretensions whatsoever. If that isn't enough, then leave it on the shelf.