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The Beast with Five Fingers (1946)

Approved | | Horror, Mystery | 8 February 1947 (USA)
In a turn-of-the-century Renaissance Italian mansion, its tyrannical owner, a one-handed, wheelchair-bound pianist, with a strong belief in the occult, is murdered.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Robert Alda ...
...
Julie Holden
...
Victor Francen ...
Francis Ingram
...
Ovidio Castanio
Charles Dingle ...
Raymond Arlington
John Alvin ...
Donald Arlington
David Hoffman ...
Duprex
Barbara Brown ...
Mrs. Miller
...
Clara (as Patricia White)
William Edmunds ...
Antonio
Belle Mitchell ...
Giovanna
Ray Walker ...
Mr. Miller
Pedro de Cordoba ...
Horatio
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Storyline

Locals in an Italian village believe evil has taken over the estate of a recently deceased pianist where several murders have taken place. The alleged killer: the pianist's severed hand. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Sensation of Screaming Suspense! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 February 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La bête aux cinq doigts  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Though called "Bruce Conrad" in the script, Robert Alda is billed as "Conrad Ryler"; Charles Dingle is billed as "Raymond Arlington"; Ray Walker is billed as "Mr. Miller". See more »

Goofs

When Julie is opening the door for Conrad when he first visit Mr Ingram, you can see the shadow of the camera following her to the door and back to Mr Ingram. See more »

Quotes

Francis Ingram: Hilary, do you know why you are here?
Hilary Cummins: No, I don't . Some anniversary perhaps?
Francis Ingram: No, no such thing. I merely want your testimony... that I am not insane. It's very important to me to be certain that not one of you thinks I am of unsound mind. Bruce, you are an artist, a musician, You've been with me a long time. You've been with me constantly; therefore you are in a position to speak. Are you convinced that there is nothing wrong with... with my mental balance?
Conrad Ryler: Your mental balance is equal to mine...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Oh Doctor Beeching!: Lucky Strike (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Chaconne in D minor BMW 1004
Composed bt Johann Sebastian Bach
Arranged for the left hand by Johannes Brahms
Pianist Ervin Nyiregyhazi
("Played on the screen by Victor Francen)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
More suspense than horror but a must-see for true fans of the genre.
26 August 2000 | by (Isle of Man) – See all my reviews

Classic early horror with Lorre in superb eye-popping form. Film is set in an Italian mansion where a wealthy pianist is close to death. When he passes away it turns out he has left everything in his will to his nurse, who incurs the wrath of the grasping relatives who have arrived. The bickering takes a sinister turn when the solicitor is strangled, seemingly by the severed hand of the dead pianist.

Lorre plays the deranged librarian whose sightings of the hand send him increasingly over the edge into madness. Despite the true horror potential of the storyline, the film tends to play more like a murder mystery. Much of the atmosphere is wasted by the air of light-heartedness, particularly the contrived slap-happy ending.

Misgivings aside, 'The Beast with Five Fingers' is still one of the genre making horrors, and while not in the same league as the heavyweight films of the 1930's like 'Frankenstein', 'The Invisible Man' or 'Mad Love', still rates serious attention.

Other severed hands featured in ' Dr Terror's House of Horrors, 'Evil Dead II', and Oliver Stone's 'The Hand'.


14 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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