Neither an unappreciated masterpiece nor a forgotten gem, Dead and Buried is simply a pretty respectable old horror movie from 1981.
The movie is less a plot than a figure-it-out. Early scenes have many visitors to the small town of Potter’s Bluff being killed in fairly gruesome fashion by several assailants, and it is hardly a spoiler to say that several of these attackers are local citizens with standard day jobs, as this is also revealed almost instantly.
The rest of the movie involves local Sheriff Dan Gillis and his efforts to work out who is responsible and why.
That’s really it.
Through the next hour or so you sorta already now how it will turn out, only a few clever but subtle changes come up meaning that even when you know what is going to happen, you almost don’t.
The acting is serviceable although some of the bit parts overact fiercely at times, including the murdered fisherman who takes drunk acting to ludicrous levels.
A very camp undertaker, Dobbs, has some left field opinions and is not afraid to share them with Dan, who grows increasingly confused as evidence piles up around him.
I won’t say what sub-genre of horror we are dealing with here, as even the most minor allusion will give away the whole movie.
I can’t be bothered whipping up another 600 words on a straightforward movie such as this so I won’t. What we have here is a pretty basic scenario brightened up somewhat towards the end by several minor variations and twists, nothing like “Bruce’s wife dropping the Wedding ring” or “Samara crawling through the TV”, but welcome additions to what would otherwise be a Twilight Zone episode nonetheless.
Oh, and I don’t think I could finish without mentioning Robert Englund of Freddie fame is in this, it’s irrelevant though.