Zombies of Mora Tau

Zombies of Mora Tau (also known as The Dead That Walk) is a 1957 black-and-white zombie horror film directed by Edward L. Cahn and starring Gregg Palmer, Autumn Russel, Joel Ashley, Morris Ankrum, and Marjorie Eaton. Distributed by Columbia Pictures, it was produced by Sam Katzman. The screenplay was written by George H. Plympton and Bernard Gordon. Zombies of Mora Tau was released on a double bill with another Katzman-produced film, The Man Who Turned to Stone (1957).[1]

Zombies of Mora Tau
Theatrical release half-sheet display poster
Directed byEdward L. Cahn
Produced bySam Katzman
Written by
Music byMischa Bakaleinikoff
CinematographyBenjamin H. Kline
Edited byJack Ogilvie
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • March 1957 (1957-03)
Running time
70 minutes
CountryUnited States


A team of deep sea divers, led by wealthy American tycoon George Harrison (Ashley), attempt to salvage a fortune in diamonds from the wreckage of a ship that sunk 60 years earlier off the coast of Africa. When the team arrives, they discover that the ship is cursed and the diamonds are protected by the ship's undead crew, now zombies, who are forced to guard the treasure until the diamonds are destroyed or the curse is finally lifted.


DVD release

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment released the film on DVD in October 2007 as part of a two-disc, four-film set of Katzman-produced films called Icons of Horror Collection: Sam Katzman. The set contains Zombies of Mora Tau, Creature with the Atom Brain, The Werewolf and The Giant Claw.[2][3]


David Maine of PopMatters rated the film 6 out of 10 stars and described it as "pretty entertaining overall, and enlivened immeasurably by Ms. Eaton’s fiesty grandma".[4] TV Guide rated it 2 out of 5 stars and called it "standard horror quality for grade-B films".[5] Writing in The Zombie Movie Encyclopedia, academic critic Peter Dendle said, "This awkward and talentless movie is nonetheless surprisingly prescient in zombie film history, anticipating a number of motifs that would reappear in later decades".[6] Zombiemania: 80 Movies to Die For author Arnold T. Blumberg wrote that the film is "a fun late-night creature feature, but it's prone to boring passages and a low-rent production quality that never allows it to break out of the B-movie mold", adding that the film is "almost single-handedly saved by the Maria Ouspenskaya/Celia Lovsky stylings of actress Marjorie Eaton, who lends the film an impressive conviction as well as a wry approach to her already sharp dialogue".[7]


  1. "Movie Reviews". 19 April 2018. Archived from the original on 16 October 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2018 via NYTimes.com.
  2. "The Giant Claw (1957) - Fred Sears - Releases - AllMovie". AllMovie. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  3. "DVD Savant Review: Icons of Horror Collection: Sam Katzman". www.dvdtalk.com. Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  4. Maine, David (2013-01-22). "Don't Open That Door! #27: 'Zombies of Mora Tau' (1957)". PopMatters. Archived from the original on 2015-02-20. Retrieved 2015-02-22.
  5. "Zombies of Mora Tau". TV Guide. Archived from the original on 2015-02-22. Retrieved 2015-02-22.
  6. Dendle, Peter (2001). The Zombie Movie Encyclopedia. McFarland & Company. pp. 211–212. ISBN 978-0-7864-9288-6.
  7. Blumberg, Arnold (2006). Zombiemania: 80 Movies to Die For. Telos Publishing. p. 391. ISBN 9781845830038.

See also

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