(AKA Voodoo Blood Bath, Zombie Bloodbath, Invasion of the Zombies, Zombie, Zombies, Voodoo Island)
Uggh. What a title.
Fortunately it really doesn’t fit.
Don’t be fooled by the date, either. Director Del “Horror of Party Beach” Tenney actually made this one in 1964 but it went unreleased until some marketing “genius” got the idea of releasing it on a double bill with the disgustingly gruesome I Drink Your Blood (which one can honestly say deserves the title). Curiously, the trailer for that double feature doesn’t feature any clips from this film.
Now, I’ll admit that it might be because they figured that the drive-in audience was primarily interested in blood, guts and severed limbs, but it suspect it was because I Eat Your Skin is in grainy Black and White.
Frankly I love the look, but it must have looked ancient at the time, a decade or more before black and white again became an artistic choice for mainstream directors like David Lynch (The Elephant Man) and Tim Burton (Ed Wood) rather than a mark of supreme cheapness.
Tom Harris, A Mickey Spillaine-style paperback writer is behind schedule on his latest book, so his agent persuades him to go on vacation on a remote Island. After all, his friend owns it, it is peaceful, has beautiful beaches — and a terrible storm left the island with five women to every man.
Now remember that because it will never be mentioned again
However, they have to make a forced airplane landing on the island and Tom encounters a blank-eyed zombie who murders one of the locals. The natives on the island practice voodoo and, while the estate’s supervisor assures them that the natives are harmless there have been a few mysterious disappearances.
The island’s other peculiarity is that it is covered with deadly snakes. There is a scientist there who has his own research lab and is researching snake venom as a cancer cure. He comes complete with the expected beautiful daughter.
And, of course, there’s more going on that we realize, with a bit of mad science, a lot of voodoo drumming (apparently by the featured Calypso band) and even a mildly surprising twist or two.
Okay, I Eat Your Skin is a relatively minor affair, even if it does provide a thrill or two along the way. If you accept it for what it is, it isn’t too bad.
Just don’t expect anyone to start eating someone else’s skin, okay?
Not that we really needed that.