In France, an insane surgeon's obsession with an actress from England leads him to replace her pianist husband's hands that got mangled in an accident with the hands of a late knife murderer which still have the urge to throw knives.
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 <email@example.com>
You might as well know the truth as suspect it!---Here's every nerve-shattering fact laid before your startled eyes! The love riddle the police were afraid to solve brought under the lens of public scrutiny in a picture made behind bolted doors! See more »
To emphasize the similarities between the wax figures and the characters, some names are alike. For example, the suicidal Joan Gale inspires the statue of Joan of Arc. Charlotte, who should have been killed to recreate the figure of Marie Antoinette, was also the real name of the young lady who killed Marat, from the 'Assassination of Marat' depicted in the museum. See more »
When Ivan is preparing to lower Joan Gale's body out the window, you can see that her feet are still uncovered, but as she is being lowered her feet are suddenly covered. See more »
Listen, Joan Gale's body was swiped from the morgue, have you ever heard of such a thing as a death mask?
I used to be married to one.
Then it came to life and divorced you, I know all about that.
See more »
This film is full of unexpected twists and turns as should be any good mystery. When bodies begin disappearing, a desperate reporter finally hopes to get the break she needs to keep her job by attempting to unravel the mystery. She soon finds herself investigating a new wax museum which just happens to have a woman figurine of Joan of Arc which greatly resembles one of the missing bodies named Joan Gale. From there things continue to unravel and conclude in surprisingly horrific fashion for the time and era.
The Horror is there in terms of the mysterious burnt figure we see snatching the bodies as well as many other strange figures often seen only in menacing shadow.
The acting is superb. Lionel Atwill is outstanding in the role of Ivan Igor-the owner of the new wax museum who is trying to recapture his past loss. Fay Wray is stunningly beautiful in her short role as Charlotte who finds herself in a whole lot of unexpected trouble. Glenda Farrell also adds considerable energy as the female reporter--a character which unfortunately became much too common and stereotypical in this period of film. Nonetheless Farrell is quite competent in the role and definitely adds her own stamp to it.
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