The Merits of Sin: Curse of the Doll People (1961) (Mexico)

A foolish foursome of curious vacationers sneak their way into a Haitian voodoo ceremony and are completely enamored with the idol at the center of whatever ritual is going down. Because they are entitled pricks, they sneak back when the coast is clear and steal the reptilian statue. They are spotted by the high priest and flee as he curses them. Alas, they are men of science so they worry very little about the repercussions of their selfish actions. Yeah. That ends well for them.

“I wanted it, so I took it. That’s how science works!” – Dr Deadmeat

They share their exploits with their friends and family and one of their guests (a female doctor/voodoo expert) warns them of the death curse that’s been placed on them. They laugh it off as silly superstition but quickly learn that they have fucked up and the consequences are of the mortal variety.

Listen to the lady

The witch doctor has followed the defilers home and he has brought along his giant deformed zombie and the horrifying doll people of the film’s title. These creepy ass things are child sized horrors with the poorly crafted faces of their victims. They wander around brandishing a large needle which contains a fatal poison. The poor quality masks just add to the disturbing factor and make for some fine additions to whatever nightmare world they came from. Watch in terror as they creep around, stalking their victims, eager to complete their master’s vengeance.

What I want for Christmas is please go away

The bodies pile up and it’s up to our female voodoo expert and her disbelieving husband to figure out how to put an end to the witch doctor’s murderous scheme, but the cocky bastard seems to think he’s unstoppable. His hypnotic gaze and unkillable agents of vengeance seem to solidify his belief. Will the doctor and her hubby survive? Will science prove to be stronger than voodoo? Will those horrid little doll bastards haunt my nightmares forever? The answer is a resounding yes!

Haitian ?

Curse of the Doll People is a blast. It’s cheesy as all hell and benefits immensely from how straight faced it treats the admittedly ridiculous threat. The lovely dolls are portrayed by dwarves in goofy masks but instead of being laughable, they creeped the hell out of me. I remember watching this as a kid and being equally unsettled. It’s nice to know that after twenty plus years it still works on me. The female lead (portrayed by the lovely Elvira Quintana) is refreshingly strong. Never the damsel in distress, she takes the reigns and attempts to put an end to the evil. This flick just further justifies my love for Mexican horror. 8/10

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