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House of Wax (1953)

GP | | Horror | 25 April 1953 (USA)
Trailer
2:01 | Trailer

On Disc

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

Director:

André De Toth (as Andre de Toth)

Writers:

Crane Wilbur (screenplay), Charles Belden (story)
Reviews
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Vincent Price ... Prof. Henry Jarrod
Frank Lovejoy ... Det. Lt. Tom Brennan
Phyllis Kirk ... Sue Allen
Carolyn Jones ... Cathy Gray
Paul Picerni ... Scott Andrews
Roy Roberts ... Matthew Burke
Angela Clarke ... Mrs. Andrews
Paul Cavanagh ... Sidney Wallace
Dabbs Greer ... Sgt. Jim Shane
Charles Bronson ... 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

Taglines:

Beauty and Terror meet in your seat...as every thrill of its story comes off the screen right at you in NaturalVision 3 dimension See more »

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 April 1953 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Wax Works See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$658,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$23,750,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo (WarnerPhonic/RCA) (3 channels)

Color:

Color (WarnerColor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the "Guinness Book of World Records", while this film is far from being the first 3-D film, nor the first in sound or color, it was the first 3-D film released with a stereophonic soundtrack. While the original stereo tracks are considered lost, it is believed that the "clamshell case" Warner Home Video DVD uses the original 4.0 sound mix; as opposed to the "snapper" case DVD and Blu-ray release which uses the 2.0 monaural mix-down. See more »

Goofs

During the majority of the film Prof. Henry Jarrod (Vincent Price) looks normal and the skin of his face moves naturally. Near the end, when Sue Allen (Phyllis Kirk) strikes him in the face the wax mask he is wearing shatters, showing that it is hard and inflexible. See more »

Quotes

Sue Allen: It's sort of a shock to see your head detached that way.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Released in Japan in the short-lived VHD format in 3-D. This disc has been widely copied to make bootleg tapes and DVDs. See more »

Connections

Referenced in American Masters: Woody Allen: A Documentary (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Battle Hymn of the Republic
(uncredited)
Music by William Steffe
Lyrics by Julia Ward Howe
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Excellent.
8 December 2003 | by willywantsSee all my reviews

A sculptor of wax figures for a museum is horrified when his partner proposes setting fire to the unpopular museum in order to collect the insurance money. As the wax figures melt amid the blaze, the two men have a fight. The sculptor is knocked out in the scuffle and left to "perish" among the flames. He resurfaces many years later for the launch of his own wax museum. The opening coincides with the sudden disappearance of some dead bodies from the city morgue. His assistant begins to suspect his boss of foul play, especially after the deranged wizard of wax begins eyeing his assistant's lovely girlfriend as a model for a waxed figure of His assistant begins to suspect his boss of foul play, especially after the deranged wizard of wax begins eyeing his assistant's lovely girlfriend's friend as a model for a waxed figure of Joan of Arc! Great movie! Excellent performance by Vincent Price, some effectively creepy scenes and a good plot make this a must-see! Also, see the updated remake; "Waxworks 1&2". Those are very similar to this film.


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