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The Phantom of the Opera (1962)

Unrated | | Drama, Horror, Music | 15 August 1962 (USA)
Terror strikes the London Opera House as a new opera is disrupted by the actions of a deformed specter of the show's past who has an obsession with one of the production's chorus girl.

Director:

Terence Fisher

Writers:

Anthony Hinds (screenplay) (as John Elder), Gaston Leroux (composition)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Herbert Lom ... The Phantom (Prof. L. Petrie)
Heather Sears ... Christine Charles
Edward de Souza ... Harry Hunter
Thorley Walters ... Lattimer
Michael Gough ... Lord Ambrose d'Arcy
Harold Goodwin ... Bill
Martin Miller Martin Miller ... Rossi
Liane Aukin Liane Aukin ... Maria
Sonya Cordeau ... Yvonne
Marne Maitland ... Xavier
Miriam Karlin Miriam Karlin ... Charwoman (as Miriam Carlin)
Patrick Troughton ... The Rat Catcher
Renee Houston ... Mrs. Tucker
Keith Pyott ... Weaver
John Harvey John Harvey ... Sgt. Vickers
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Storyline

The corrupt Lord Ambrose D'Arcy (Michael Gough) steals the life's work of the poor composer Professor L. Petrie. (Herbert Lom). In an attempt to stop the printing of music with D'Arcy's name on it, Petrie breaks into the printing office and accidentally starts a fire, leaving him severely disfigured. Years later, Petrie returns to terrorize a London opera house that is about to perform one of his stolen operas. Written by Jeremy Lunt <durlinlunt@acadia.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

BENEATH HIS MASK...the Grotesque Face of Horror Unimaginable! INSIDE HIS HEART...the Desperate Desire for Beauty and Love! See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 August 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Das Phantom der Oper See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£180,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hammer Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(Extended Version)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The mask was made on the fly just before shooting out of cloth, tape, string and paint. See more »

Goofs

The film, set in the Edwardian period (around 1900), features an opera called "Saint Joan". But Joan of Arc was not canonized until 1920. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Lattimer: The house is sold out, my lord.
Lord Ambrose d'Arcy: No further incidents, I trust?
Lattimer: No, nothing. Everything seems quite normal.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK cinema version was cut by the BBFC for an 'A' (PG) certificate and edited the eye-stabbing of the rat-catcher and shots of a hanging body, as well as extensive edits to scenes showing the creation and final unmasking of the Phantom. Later video and DVD releases were uncut. See more »


Soundtracks

Joan of Arc
by Edwin Astley
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Confusing Remake of a Classic Film
26 February 2003 | by bsmith5552See all my reviews

This version of "The Phantom of the Opera" was the second remake of the oft filmed classic tale was produced by England's Hammer Studios who remade most of the old Universal B&W classics of the 30s and 40s.

An Opera based on the life of Joan of Arc is being performed at the Opera house. Several mysterious unexplainable events have taken place. An apparent murder scares off the lead singer and she is replaced by a young aspiring singer, Christine (Heather Sears). A shadowy figure known as The Phantom (Herbert Lom) lurking among the shadows takes a personal interest in the girl. Also taking an interest in her is lecherous Lord Ambrose D'Arcy (Michael Gough) the womanizing entrepreneur. Coming to her aid is the Opera's producer (Edward de Souza) the token hero of the piece.

Needless to say the girl winds up in the Phantom's underground hideaway where she is kept captive until his terrible secret is revealed.

Lom as the Phantom is more of a supporting player rather than the star. The Phantom is played more as a sympathetic character rather than a menace. The real villain of the piece is Gough who steals the film as the unscrupulous D'Arcy. There is also an evil dwarf (Ian Wilson). Lom's makeup as The Phantom is not revealed until the end of the film and then we only get a brief glimpse. It could have been used to much greater effect.

Others in the cast include Thorley Walters as Latimer, the manager of the Opera house and Miles Malleson in a nice bit as the cabby in the park. True Hammer Horror fans will spot Hammer regular Michael Ripper almost unrecognizable as the first cabby who drives the hero and heroine home from the restaurant.

Unfortunately, the producers have left many loose ends. What happens to D'Arcy who is last seen running from the room in which he has just met The Phantom? And the Dwarf? He is literally left hanging at the film's end. Do the baddies get away with it?

The original theatrical version of the film runs 84 minutes. There is also a 98 minute version which adds scenes involving Scotland Yard detectives investigating the goings on at the Opera, a flashback sequence which repeats in its entirety a scene shown earlier and an attempted murder of D'Arcy's mistress all of which add nothing to the film.

No one will ever better the Lon Chaney 1925 silent version of this story but you have to give Hammer credit for at least trying to tell it with a few new twists.


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