Song of the Voodoo (1931) | Haitian Travelogue

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Haiti Travel documentary originally released in 1931 by RKO-Pathé. From the Prelinger Archive.

As described in RKO Radio Pictures Horror, Science Fiction and Fantasy Films, 1929–1956 by Michael R. Pitts:

The Song of the Voodoo (1931; 9 minutes) CAST: Tom Terris (Narrator). White Zombie, released theatrically by United Artists in the summer of 1932, is credited with being the first film to use voodoo as part of its story. It was, however, preceded in theaters by the RKO-Pathe short subject The Song of the Voodoo, part of the studio’s “Vagabond Adventure” series, produced by the Van Beuren Corporation. A voodoo ceremony is pictured in the docu-mentary along with a overview of Haiti, where residents are shown in various activities, plus a tour of sculptor Charles Normil’s studio. Exhibitors’ Forum termed it “another of the popular Vagabond Adventure series which is always interesting…. The description of the voodoo ceremony by Tom Terris is vividly told in his usual accomplished manner.” The Film Daily called it an “interesting travel talk” and concluded, “The descriptive matter of the voodoo ceremony is more interesting than the photographs.”

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