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House of Wax (1953)

 -  Horror  -  25 April 1953 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 9,364 users  
Reviews: 108 user | 76 critic

An associate burns down a wax museum with the owner inside, but he survives only to become vengeful and murderous.

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(as Andre de Toth)

Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
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Title: House of Wax (1953)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Frank Lovejoy ...
Det. Lt. Tom Brennan
...
Sue Allen
...
Cathy Gray
...
Scott Andrews
...
Matthew Burke
Angela Clarke ...
Mrs. Andrews
Paul Cavanagh ...
Sidney Wallace
...
Sgt. Jim Shane
...
Igor (as Charles Buchinsky)
Reggie Rymal ...
The Barker
Edit

Storyline

Professor Henry Jarrod is a true artist whose wax sculptures are lifelike. He specializes in historical tableau's such a Marie Antoinette or Joan of Arc. His business partner, Matthew Burke, needs some of his investment returned to him and pushes Jarrod to have more lurid exposes like a chamber of horrors. When Jarrod refuses, Burke set the place alight destroying all of his beautiful work in the hope of claiming the insurance. Jarrod is believed to have died in the fire but he unexpectedly reappears some 18 months later when he opens a new exhibit. This time, his displays focus on the macabre but he has yet to reproduce his most cherished work, Marie Antoinette. When he meets his new assistant's beautiful friend, Sue Allen, he knows he's found the perfect model - only unbeknown to anyone, he has a very particular way of making his wax creations. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

wax | sculptor | fire | wax museum | morgue | See more »

Taglines:

Nothing that has gone before can compare with this! See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 April 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Wax Works  »

Box Office

Budget:

$658,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$23,750,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (WarnerPhonic/RCA)

Color:

(WarnerColor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The alcoholic sculptor was a heroin addict in the original version of the film, Mystery of the Wax Museum (1933), but that had to be changed for the remake because the Production Code forbade any mention of drug addiction. (Ironically, a character played by Vincent Price had got away with confessing to drug addiction in Dragonwyck (1946), filmed in 1945, eight years before "House of Wax.") See more »

Goofs

When the original wax museum is on fire, wires can be seen pulling some of the wax figures down. The wire attached to the Joan of Arc figure is particularly evident, pulling it down at the end of the sequence. See more »

Quotes

Prof. Henry Jarrod: I'm afraid that the visit of a such distinguished critic may cause my children to become conceited. To you they are wax, but to me their creator, they live and breathe.
See more »

Connections

Version of Mystery of the Wax Museum (1933) See more »

Soundtracks

Battle Hymn of the Republic
(uncredited)
Written by Julia Ward Howe
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
The Morgue of Wax
6 January 2008 | by (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – See all my reviews

In 1900, in New York, Prof. Henry Jarrod (Vincent Price) is an artist, sculpting masterpieces in wax and exposing them in a small and non-profitable museum. When his partner Matthew Burke (Roy Roberts) proposes a criminal fire to receive the insurance, Henry does not accept and fights with him. Henry is knocked out, left in the burning place and considered dead by the insurance company. When Matthew receives the insurance money, a disfigured man kills him, and later many corpses vanish from the city morgue. The crippled Prof. Henry Jarrod reappears in a wheelchair and destroyed hands, preparing the grand-opening of his wax museum. Meanwhile, Sue Allen (Phyllis Kirk) is impressed with the resemblance of statue of Joan of Arc with her friend Cathy Gray (Carolyn Jones), who was killed and her corpse was missing, and she suspects that her body was covered by wax.

"House of Wax" is good, but also an absolutely unnecessary remake of Michael Curtiz's "Mystery of the Wax Museum", which is better resolved. There are many scenes and dialogs that are identical, and this remake does not add any value to the original movie. Vincent Price performs a creepy character and the movement of his body is one of the greatest differences in this remake. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "Museu de Cera" ("Wax Museum")


13 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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