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Shock Waves

Shock Waves is an underrated classic film from 1977 starring two legends of the horror world. John Carradine who portrays a crotchety sea captain named Ben and Peter Cushing who as a SS Commander now living in a self imposed exile.

Shock Waves was written and directed by Ken Wiederhorn ( Return of the Living Dead 2) with a haunting film score done by Richard Einhorn (The Prowler, Dead of Winter). The movie was filmed on location in Coral Gables, Florida and Bimini Islands in the Bahamas. They used an actual ship wreck in the Bimini Islands as the centerpiece of the movie. The SS Sapona was a concrete-hulled cargo steamer that ran aground near Bimini during a hurricane in 1926 and the remains of the ship are still there.

The film opens with Capt. Ben ( Carradine) taking a small group of tourists on an excursion when they begin to encounter some strange occurrences at sea. Their boat suffers damage when it is hit by a much larger ship, which turns out to the shipwrecked ship. Then the Captain mysteriously disappears so the first mate and the Galley cook begin to take the tourists ashore a small island where they find that Capt. Ben is dead of an apparent drowning. Fun fact to shoot the scene of John Carradine under water they had him in folding lawn chair that they laid down in a swimming pool and John Carradine almost drown for real during filming. After coming ashore they come upon a seemingly abandoned resort. Its here that we meet Peter Cushing as the SS Commander and he tells the tale of the role he played with the Nazis in WWII. He was in charge of an elite death Squad. He goes on to say the soldiers were the worst of the worst and they were not dead but not living but somewhere in between and that when the war was lost he sunk the boat with the soldiers and he retreated to this island. The undead soldiers rise from the bottom of the sea and they do get their revenge on their former Commander and the tourists.

This movie is classified as a Nazi Zombie movie, but they are not your typical zombies as they don't try to bite people or eat them. Shock waves offers a very different take on the zombie genre and the final shot of the wrecked ship with the haunting music will stay with you long after you've seen the film.


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