Welcome, children of the night! This Blog is for fans of vintage horror films as well as those who are just beginning to discover the joy of these classic movies. I'd love to hear from you!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Abominable Dr Phibes (1971)

As they say, revenge is a dish that is best served cold.  And no one does revenge better than Vincent Price in The Abominable Dr Phibes.  The good doctor seeks to settle the score by knocking off nine doctors whom he blames for his wife's death.  He does so by unleashing the biblical plagues in sequential order with creativity and gusto.  Lots of fun!  Price is one of the few actors who I think can pull off this role.  He doesn't speak a single word in the entire film except for voiceovers which is not an easy thing too do.  His dramatic acting style suits the character well.
The look  of the film is also interesting.  It's very early 70's but in a good way.  Many of the sets are very colorful with modern architectural lines but also contain flourishes of art nouveaux to give it a sense of something older than itself.  Phibes and his faithful assistant Vulnavia are clothed in a way that only the early 70's could produce.  This is especially true of  Vulnavia who looks like she's been shopping in Lady Gaga's closet.  [Or is that the other way around?]
The Abominable Dr. Phibes spawned a sequel, Dr Phibes Rises Again (1972).  I consider the sequel to be even better than the original.  It has more of a sense of humor than the original and feels like it had a bigger budget to work with.  The result is that the sequel is even more visually stunning than the first.
If you're a fan of Vincent Price, this one is a must see.  It's a quirky, imaginative take on the revenge tale.
RATING: Very Good.
For more info check out the film's entry in IMDB.

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