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1983 / Horror
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7.5 / 10
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Directed by Howard Avedis
Written by Howard Avedis and Marlene Schmidt
Starring Mary Beth McDonough, David Wysocki, Bill Paxton, Lynda Day George and Christopher George

Convinced that her father's death was not accidental, a beautiful girl decides to investigate to find out the truth, aided by her boyfriend. Her sleuthing draws her to a local mortuary, where many secrets will be revealed.

The following tags are associated with this movie: Slasher, Undertaker
Mortuary (1983)
Review by Bradley Frohloff

7 / 10
This is a long-forgotten slasher movie, featuring a young Bill Paxton. It is fairly light on kills but does have a hooded killer chasing a few people around in typical early 80's fashion. The dialogue at times is a bit corny, the movie is a little slow, but it does have that obscure slasher vibe that many fiends from this decade would be attracted to.

The funniest thing I thought about it was that it's quite clear who the killer is. If you pause at the right times or look hard enough at his face (of which there are many scenes to do so), it's easy to see who that face belongs to. The movie contains one of my favourite types of endings, which were prominent in 70's/80's horror movies where they freeze frame a surprise at the end. I often love when a movie has one of those.

Mortuary is worth checking out if you're into slasher movies but it's certainly lacking a few things that really make a slasher movie great. Though if the mother and daughter combo in this movie were each a slice of bread, I'd be more than happy to provide the meat for that sandwich.
Mortuary (1983)
Review by Michael Mahoney

8 / 10
I've long heard about this film, and for some time now, have been interested in seeing it. Does it live up to my expectations? For the most part, but it does have one glaring problem.

Mortuary has a lot of class for a slasher, and while the story itself was lacking in the atmosphere I was hoping it'd convey, there are plenty of suspenseful and well-done scenes. The setting, a coastal California city, stood out, and many of the actors were solid.

Mary McDonough, David Wysocki, Christopher George, and Bill Paxton all stood out positively (which, for George, is a good thing, as this is his final film before his death). Paxton in particular did extremely well with his role, a quirky, possibly messed up son of a mortician. He was over-the-top at times (the scene with him skipping through the graveyard was a bit much), but his character was fun, especially toward the end.

While we had decent suspense throughout, the one big problem with this film is lack of kills. On-screen, we get very little in the way of deaths, which is disappointing, as the few we do get are decently well-done. Something like two, three death scenes tops doesn't really do it for me, and while certainly the story was interesting and captivating, a few additional tertiary characters to be bumped off would have made a positive difference.

That said, Mortuary ended up as a fine film. Sure, the route it took was one almost utterly expected (the ending itself wasn't too far removed from Happy Birthday to Me), but this film took it with class. A solid movie, I just wish it had spent a bit more time giving us some kills. Otherwise, this is certainly worth a look for fans of the slasher subgenre.
Other Undertaker movies that you may enjoy

Phantasm (1979)

Phantasm II (1988)

The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016)
More releases from 1983 for you to check out

Sleepaway Camp (1983)

Curtains (1983)

Cujo (1983)

Sweet Sixteen (1983)

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