Starring: Marki Bey, Don Pedro Colley, Richard Lawson and Zara Cully
Rated: PG Action/Crime/Horror
Sugar Hill is about the extreme steps that photographer Diana Hill (Marki Bey) is willing to take for justice!
She is called “Sugar” by those close to her, including her now-fiancé, Langston (Larry D. Johnson), who she recently agreed to marry. A successful owner of a nightclub, he is constantly being threatened by local thugs in Houston, the city where the story is set. When Langston is murdered at the behest of their crime boss, Morgan (Robert Quarry), for wanting to be the sole proprietor of his own club, it devastates Sugar.
Seeking revenge, she consults Mama Maitresse (Zara Cully), a vodun queen. Mama summons Baron Samedi (Don Pedro Colley), the loa of the graveyard and death. Giving her soul to him, Sugar and Baron Samedi, accompanied by an army of zombies, orchestrate chaos and murder in exacting vengeance.
Adding to the mix is Lt. Valentine (Richard Lawson), Sugar’s ex-boyfriend, who is investigating the bodies that are quickly piling up … will Sugar be able to get justice? Will her former beau discover the true cause behind the rash of homicides and if so, what will he do? Fans of Blaxploitation horror films will want to check out this classic!
Released by American International Pictures to theaters in 1974, it was a hit with fans of both Blaxploitation and horror films. The motion picture company developed Sugar Hill after its immense success with Blacula (1972) and Scream, Blacula, Scream (1973).
Filmed on a budget of only $350,000.oo, Sugar Hill was actually shot in Houston. Its sites include the historical landmark, the Houston Public Library. In the film, the library served as the Voodoo Institute where Mama Maitresse operates.
Because of its popularity, the film has been converted in various media formats. Retitled The Zombies of Sugar Hill, its 91 minutes have been edited to 83 minutes in order to be televised. In the decades following its initial opening in theaters, Sugar Hill was released on VHS by Orion Home Video in 1996 and on DVD by MGM’s Limited Edition series in 2011.