7.7/10
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Eyes Without a Face (1960)

Les yeux sans visage (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Horror | 24 October 1962 (USA)
A surgeon causes an accident which leaves his daughter disfigured, and goes to extremes to give her a new face.

Director:

Georges Franju

Writers:

Jean Redon (novel), Pierre Boileau (adaptation) (as Boileau-Narcejac) | 4 more credits »
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Popularity
3,911 ( 234)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Pierre Brasseur ... Docteur Génessier
Alida Valli ... Louise
Juliette Mayniel ... Edna Grüber
Alexandre Rignault ... Inspector Parot
Béatrice Altariba ... Paulette (as Beatrice Altariba)
Charles Blavette ... L'homme de la fourrière (as Blavette)
Claude Brasseur ... Un inspecteur
Michel Etcheverry Michel Etcheverry ... Le docteur Lherminier - médecin légiste / Forensic surgeon
Yvette Etiévant ... La mère (as Yvette Etievent)
René Génin René Génin ... Emile Tessot
Lucien Hubert Lucien Hubert ... Un homme au cimetière
Marcel Pérès Marcel Pérès ... Un homme au cimetière (as Marcel Pères)
François Guérin François Guérin ... Jacques Vernon (as Francois Guerin)
Edith Scob ... Christiane Génessier
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Storyline

After causing an accident that left his daughter Christiane severely disfigured, the brilliant surgeon Dr. Génessier works tirelessly to give the girl a new face. He does so however by kidnapping young women and attempting face transplants. He has been woefully unsuccessful to date. The doctor's world begins to collapse around him when his daughter realizes just what he has been doing. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Beautiful women were the victims of his FIENDISH FACIALS!!! [American retitled and dubbed version poster]

Genres:

Drama | Horror

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | Italy

Language:

French

Release Date:

24 October 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Horror Chamber of Dr. Faustus See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$19,628, 2 November 2003

Gross USA:

$58,565

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$60,254
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film made its debut in Paris on March 2, 1960. See more »

Goofs

In the initial surgery scene, Doctor Génessier makes cuts around the face and eyes of the young woman (Edna). When he and Louise remove the face, there are suddenly marks and a hole cut around the mouth. See more »

Quotes

Doctor Génessier: Smile. Smile. Not too much.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The film was re-released to US theaters completely uncut and under its original title on October, 31st 2003. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Fear, Panic & Censorship (2000) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Bizarre plastic surgery horror film with magnificent acting and excellent imagery
23 February 2013 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

Moody terror movie about a mad doctor who removes the faces of gorgeous girls and attempts to graft them onto the ruined head of his disfiguring daughter . It deals with a prestigious but crazed surgeon/scientist named Dr. Génessier (Pierre Brasseur), feeling guilty over his intimate daughter's (Edith Scob) facial disfigurement is helped by his assistant Louise (Alida Valli) to kidnap beautiful young women , one of them is Edna (Juliette Mayniel). His beloved daughter is called Christiane (Edith Scob), whose head has been entirely spoiled in a car accident and whose face is so horrible that she wears a mask . All the experiments fail, but he attempts , without success , to transfer their faces and the victims die, but Génessier keeps trying again , but his guinea pig turns out to be his own daughter . Meanwhile , some Police Inspectors (Rignault and Claude Brasseur) are investigating the grisly killings .

Austerily marvelous terror film that contains thrills , chills and haunting poetic fantasy . In this wonderful as well as terrible flick , George Franju established his uniquely poetic and visually striking style . This splendid picture is generally characterized by unforgettable images that owed a great deal to early cinema in general and German Expressionism in particular and results to be a symbolic attack on the ethics of science . Although the film passed European censors upon its original release in 1960, the disturbing facial surgery scene still caused controversy . It was reported that several audience members fainted during the surgery scene . Originally released in the US in an edited version titled "The Horror Chamber of Dr. Faustus" , an odd title considering there's no one named Dr. Faustus in the film . Director John Carpenter once suggested that selecting the mask that Michael Myers wore in Halloween (1978) was influenced by Edith Scob's mask in this film and equally in recent movie (2011) by Pedro Almodovar titled "The Skin I Live In" . Good acting by Pierre Brasseur as a brilliant but demented researcher/scientific/surgeon haunted by past tragedy who abducts girls removing their faces and tries to graft them onto the head on his beloved daughter . Evocative and imaginative cinematography by Eugen Shuftan . Enjoyable musical score by Maurice Jarre , composing in his usual and agreeable style .

This classic terror motion picture , a classic in some circles , was stunningly directed by Georges Franju who never considered the film to be a horror story, but instead felt it was tale of "anguish" . Initial releases of the film were met with negative reactions from film critics , while the general critical reaction had been poor , however ,today is considered to be a masterpiece . One French critic stated the film was "in a minor genre and quite unworthy of Franju's abilities . Franju responded by saying that the film was his attempt to get the minor genre to be taken seriously. Rating : Better than average , well worth watching .

George Franju was a magnificent filmmaker but one of the underrated directors of French cinema , being his feature debut was "Head Against the Wall"(1959) . His reputation was strengthened with the Eyes without of face (1960); Judex (1963), a tribute to French film serial pioneer Louis Feuillade in 1963; and the Jean Cocteau adaptation Thomas l'imposteur (1965), though in the last 15 years of his life he was sadly neglected.


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