This early entry in Rialto Film's krimi cycle may not have the most interesting story, but it does have much to recommend it. After master criminal Clay Shelton (gaunt Otto Collin) is executed by the hangman of London, his 'ghost' returns from the dead and starts murdering those responsible for his conviction. It's up to Chief Inspector Long of Scotland Yard (handsome Joachim Fuchsberger) to solve the mystery and end the serial killings, not to mention win the hand of fetching secretary Nora Duncan (Karin Dor). Though the narrative is rather plodding and fairly predictable, Die Bande des Schreckens benefits tremendously from fabulous black and white cinematography by Albert Benitz, who got his start shooting 'mountain films' with Leni Riefenstahl back in the 1920s. His work here is truly exquisite, taking full advantage of black and white stock's unique qualities, and Tobis' PAL DVD does it full justice. There's also a spare but quite memorable score from Heinz Funk, and Collin makes for a memorable, Mabuse-like villain.
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