Tell me if you think these words belong together: “Victorian,” “supernatural,” “grave-robber,” and “comedy.”
If the answer is “yes,” go rent I Sell the Dead. Arthur Blake (Dominic Monaghan) is a resurrectionist about to be executed for his crimes; Francis Duffy (Ron Perlman) is a priest who comes to interview him before his head gets chopped off. Blake tells the story of how, as a wee lad, he got into the body-snatching trade — and then how he and his mentor discovered the real money was in stealing the undead. Wacky hijinks ensue.
It’s a low-budget film that embraces its limitations and turns them into an aesthetic: lots of fog-filled shots with painted backdrops, occasional fades to cartoon sketches, that kind of thing. And, y’know, a fairly sick sense of humour. But you’ve already admitted you think a resurrectionist comedy sounds like a good idea, so there’s no point in pretending you aren’t going to laugh at the jokes.
I rented it in the name of research. There will be no grave-robbing in this novel, but if an Onyx Court body-snatcher story shows up at some point, you’ll know what source to blame.