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Mystery of the Wax Museum (1933)

The disappearance of people and corpses leads a reporter to a wax museum and a sinister sculptor.



(screen play), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Complete credited cast:
Allen Vincent ...
Dr. Rasmussen
Claude King ...
Mr. Galatalin
Arthur Edmund Carewe ...
Sparrow - Professor Darcy
Thomas E. Jackson ...
Detective (as Thomas Jackson)
DeWitt Jennings ...
Police Captain
Matthew Betz ...
Joan Gale


In London, sculptor Ivan Igor struggles in vain to prevent his partner Worth from burning his wax museum...and his 'children.' Years later, Igor starts a new museum in New York, but his maimed hands confine him to directing lesser artists. People begin disappearing (including a corpse from the morgue); Igor takes a sinister interest in Charlotte Duncan, fiancée of his assistant Ralph, but arouses the suspicions of Charlotte's roommate, wisecracking reporter Florence. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

wax | sculptor | reporter | money | corpse | See All (137) »


Images of wax that throbbed with human passion! Almost woman....what did they lack? See more »


Unrated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

18 February 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Mystery of the Wax Museum  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



(2-strip Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The film begins in London in 1921, but most of the action occurs shortly after New Year 1933 in New York. See more »


The bottle of whiskey that the officer picks up is clearly not leaking in the long shot, but in the close up shot, it shows the liquid practically pouring from the bottom. See more »


Ivan Igor: I offer you immortality, my child. Think of it: in a thousand years you shall be as lovely as you are now!
See more »


Edited into Mame (1974) See more »


The Prisoner's Song
Written by Guy Massey
Sung a cappella by Glenda Farrell
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Remember this forgotten masterpiece
10 June 1999 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

A genuinely frightening film from Michael Curtiz, jack of no trades and master of all. Many of the tricks of classic 1930's horror are here, including the opening scene set in a dark, rainy London street, the long shadows on the wall, lengthy periods of silence, and all timed to perfection. Only the faster-than-the-speed-of-sound dialogue of Glenda Farrell truly lets the film down. But other than that it is a gothic masterpiece, an underrated movie probably due to the fact that it lay undiscovered, thought lost, for over half a century. Far more inventive and imaginative than the majority of horror films made today.

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2-strip technicolor fluffhead34
As Good as 1953 version? mmpabbott
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Based on a Gaston Leroux story? jrpelt
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