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 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This film was produced before the Production Code. When it was re-made only 20 years later, as House of Wax (1953), all references to drug use were removed and a character was changed from a junkie to an alcoholic. See more »
After Worth hits Darrow and he falls against the wall it very noticeably moves showing that it's a prop. See more »
[describing the disfigured man's appearance]
And that face , it was like an African war mask.
You mean he was colored?
I don't know what he was , but he made Frankenstein look like a lily.
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The beauty of two-strip Technicolor rendering sensual pastel tones and settings in London (1921) and New York (1933), art direction by legendary Anton Grot, Orry-Kelly gowns, Lionel Atwill at his maddest and Fay Wray in all her splendor, make this one of the finest horror films of not only the 30s but of all time. The pace of this film is fast, the comedy relief enjoyable but not detracting from its story. Atwill imbues his character of Ivan Igor with all the menace and evil he could muster (and that was calibrated in tons!) So far superior to its remake (HOUSE OF WAX with Vincent Price) that it leaves its competitor in the dust. Easily my favorite film to look at after New Year's Eve parties. Fantastic fun and candy for the eyes with all that streamlined Art Deco grandeur!
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