7.2/10
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Black Sabbath (1963)

I tre volti della paura (original title)
Unrated | | Horror | 6 May 1964 (USA)
A trio of atmospheric horror tales about: A woman terrorized in her apartment by phone calls from an escaped prisoner from her past; a Russian count in the early 1800s who stumbles upon a ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Rosy (segment "The Telephone")
Lidia Alfonsi ...
Mary (segment "The Telephone") (as Lydia Alfonsi)
...
Gorca (segment "The Wurdalak")
...
Vladimire d'Urfe (segment "The Wurdalak")
Susy Andersen ...
Sdenka (segment "The Wurdalak")
Massimo Righi ...
Pietro (segment "The Wurdalak")
Rika Dialyna ...
Maria (segment "The Wurdalak") (as Rica Dialina)
Glauco Onorato ...
Giorgio (segment "The Wurdalak")
Jacqueline Pierreux ...
Helen Chester (segment "The Drop of Water")
Milly ...
The Maid (segment "The Drop of Water") (as Milly Monti)
Harriet Medin ...
Neighbor (segment "The Drop of Water")
Gustavo De Nardo ...
Police Inspector (segment "The Drop of Water")
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Storyline

A trio of atmospheric horror tales about: A woman terrorized in her apartment by phone calls from an escaped prisoner from her past; a Russian count in the early 1800s who stumbles upon a family in the countryside trying to destroy a particularly vicious line of vampires; and a 1900-era nurse who makes a fateful decision while preparing the corpse of one of her patients - an elderly medium who died during a seance. Written by scgary66

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

This is the night of the nightmare...The day of the Undead. See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

6 May 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Black Sabbath  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"The Telephone" segment is one of the earliest example of a Giallo, a thriller/horror sub genre that were to be popularized by Dario Argento's "The Bird with the Crystal Plumage". See more »

Goofs

The narration of this film's English-dubbed version claims that "The Wurdulak" was written by Tolstoy and that "The Drop of Water" was written by Chekhov. The first claim is misleading; "The Wurdulak" was not written by Leo Tolstoy, the famous author of *War and Peace*, but by minor novelist Alexei Tolstoy. The second claim is completely untrue; Anton Chekhov never wrote a short story titled "The Drop of Water" or any story with a plot resembling that of the so-named segment of this film. See more »

Quotes

Gorca: What's the matter, woman? Can't I fondle my own grandson? Give him to me!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Great Silence (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not Bava's best but still fun
22 August 2007 | by (Worcester, MA) – See all my reviews

"Black Sabbath" is often thought as of both one of Bava's best and the single greatest horror omnibus. It's neither (Bava's best is either "Black Sunday" or "Danger: Diabolik" and the finest horror omnibus is still the original "Dead of Night"), but its a lot of fun for fans of vintage Gothic horrors. Everyone involved seems to be having a lot of fun, especially Boris Karloff who introduces each story and stars in the second one. Still, despite an occasional camp atmosphere, the stories all achieve some sense of suspense, especially the unbearably horrifying final tale "A Drop of Water". The fact that Bava manages to balance more light-hearted elements along with the terror prove he was one of the greatest directors of the fantastic of all time. And as usual, his direction is magnificent and use of color schemes completely puts Argento to shame.

The stories themselves are a rather mixed bag. The first one, "The Telephone", is never really scary (until the end that is) yet remains an interesting real time piece. The lesbian subtext (edited out of the American version) is quite ahead of its time, and Michèle Mercier is absolutely gorgeous. "The Wurdalak" is a novel twist on the vampire myth and beautifully directed as usual for Bava, but probably the weakest story. I'm rather ashamed to select this as my least favorite, because of the delicious as usual performance from Boris Karloff. The final entry, "A Drop of Water", is easily the best, possibly the first Giallo film. It looks beautiful, tells a compelling story, and the tension just builds up until the climax. Its simply Bava at his finest.

"Black Sabbath" is a lot of fun to watch for fans of vintage horror films. The only really annoying part is the breaking the fourth wall gag at the end, which completely ruins the film's dreamlike mood. The American print wisely edits it out. And yes, one of the greatest bands of all time did take their name from this film. (7/10)


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