Paura nella città dei morti viventi (1980)

89m (Germany, UK), 90m (Australia, Norway), 91m (Italy), 92m
35mm, colour, 1.85:1
Italian, English
Reviewed at The EOFFTV Review

An Italian horror film directed by Lucio Fulci, the second of his loosely related series of zombie films initiated by the worldwide success of Zombi 2 (1979). Fulci has an uncredited cameo in the film as Dr Joe Thompson.

Plot Summary

Following the death by suicide of the local priest, a gateway to Hell opens beneath the town of Dunwich and the dead are soon roaming the streets. A journalist and a psychic rush from New York to Dunwich to try to close the gateway before All Saints Day, after which, the dead will be free to pour out from Hell and conquer the living.


Directed by: Lucio Fulci
© [not given on screen]
A Dania Film, Medusa Distribuzione, National Cinematografica production
Executive Producer in the U.S.: Robert Warner
Story and Screenplay: Lucio Fulci, Dardano Sacchetti
Director of Photography: Sergio Salvati
Editor: Vincenzo Tomassi
Music Composed and Conducted by: Fabio Frizzi
Sound Engineer: Ugo Celani
Costumes: Massimo Antonello Geleng
Make-up: Franco Rufini
Special Effects: Gino De Rossi
Design: Massimo Antonello Geleng

Christopher George (Peter Bell)
Katriona Mac Coll [real name: Katriona MacColl] (Mary Woodhouse)
Carlo De Mejo (Gerry)
Antonella Interlenghi (Emily Robbins)
Giovanni Lombardo Radice (Bob)
Daniela Doria (Rose Kelvin)
Fabrizio Jovine (Father William Thomas)
Luca Paisner (John Robbins)
Michele Soavi (Tommy Fisher)
Venantino Venantini (Mr Ross)
Enzo D'Ausilio (Sheriff Russell's deputy)
Adelaide Aste (Madame Teresa)
Luciano Rossi (policeman in apartment)
Robert Sampson (Sheriff Russell)
Janet Agren as “Sandra”

Alternative Titles

Blood Orgy – USA (drive-in)
City of the Living Dead – UK
Entrada al Infierno – Spain (video)
Frayeurs – France
The Gates of Hell – USA
Eine Leiche Hangt am Glockenseil – Germany (alternative)
Miedo en la ciudad de los muertos vivientes – Spain
Pater Thomas – Europe (bootleg)
La paura – shooting title
Ein Toter Hing am Glockenseil – Germany (alternative)
Twilight of the Dead – USA
Ein Zombie Hing am Glockenseil – Germany

See also
…E tu vivrai nel terrore! L'aldilà (1981)
Quella villa accanto al cimitero (1981)


Screen International no.341 (1 May 1982) p.20
This has a far more coherent story than the same director's The Beyond though it has a similar theme of emerging from an exit from the underworld and either could well be the blueprint for the other. As such gruesome horrors go, it is enjoyably sick with the shock effects verging on black comedy – such as the coffin robbing mortician receiving swift and fitting punishment for his crime when his dead victim snaps her teeth into his fingers. Indeed, it is outrageous fun for the viewer who is not nauseated beyond endurance by worms and maggots all alive o and the sight of squashed brains oozing from crushed skulls. Given a packed house of consenting adults reacting vocally, a good time should be had by all except those who are throwing up. – from a review by Marjorie Bilbow



  • Cinefantastique vol.11 no.1 (Summer (1981) p.11 – illustrated article (by Mike Childs and Alan Jones)
  • Delirium no.3 pp.39-41 – credits, synopsis, review
  • L'Écran Fantastique no.14 p.57 (1980) – review
  • L'Écran Fantastique no.16 (1980) pp.17-33; 18-21 – illustrated article, credits; illustrated interview with Lucio Fulci
  • Fangoria no.195 (August 2000) p.53 – illustrated DVD review
  • Films and Filming no.333 (June 1982) pp.33-34 – review (by Julian Petley)
  • Rivista del Cinematografo no.7 (July 1981) p.394 – credits
  • Screen International no.341 (1 May 1982) p.20 – credits, synopsis, review (The new films by Marjorie Bilbow)
  • Spaghetti Cinema no.65 (August 1996) pp.40-41 – credits, synopsis, review
  • Starburst 30 p.23 – review
  • Starburst no.48 (August 1982) pp.12-13 – illustrated review (by Alan Jones)
  • Starburst no.64 p.43 – review
  • Variety 25 May 1983 pp.18, 24 – credits, review (by Lor)
  • Video the Magazine August 1986 p.61 – illustrated review


  • Beyond Terror pp.162-167; 278 – illustrated synopsis, review (by Stephen Thrower); credits
  • Horror and Science Fiction Films III by Donald C. Willis pp.110-111 – credits
  • The Lurker in the Lobby: A Guide to the Cinema of H.P. Lovecraft by Andrew Migliore and John Strysik p.44 – illustrated credits, review
  • Splatter Movies (2nd edition) p.124 – review