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Psycho-Circus (1966)

Circus of Fear (original title)
A circus becomes the location for stolen loot and murder.

Directors:

Werner Jacobs, John Llewellyn Moxey (as John Moxey)

Writer:

Harry Alan Towers (screenplay) (as Peter Welbeck)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Lee ... Gregor
Leo Genn ... Inspector Elliott
Anthony Newlands ... Barberini
Heinz Drache ... Carl
Eddi Arent ... Eddie
Klaus Kinski ... Manfred
Margaret Lee ... Gina
Suzy Kendall ... Natasha
Cecil Parker ... Sir John
Victor Maddern ... Mason
Maurice Kaufmann ... Mario
Lawrence James Lawrence James ... Detective Sgt. Manley
Tom Bowman Tom Bowman ... Jackson
Skip Martin ... Mr. Big
Nosher Powell Nosher Powell ... Red (as Fred Powell)
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Storyline

A circus becomes the location for stolen loot and murder.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The most horrifying syndicate of evil in history!


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | West Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

May 1967 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Psycho-Circus See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Circus Films,Proudweeks See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited) (black and white)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Black and White | Color (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The winter quarters of Barberini's circus in this movie were largely filmed at the actual home of one of Britain's most famous circus companies Billy Smart's circus in Winkfield, Berkshire. See more »

Goofs

In the fight scene between the knife thrower and the head of the circus the two actors were rolling around in the elephant area and on the circus floor, but five minutes when the manager is talking to the midget and smoking a cigarette his brown sport coat looks like it came from the cleaners. See more »

Alternate Versions

Video version entitled Circus of Fear includes new footage and introduction with John Carradine. See more »

Connections

Featured in TJ and the All Night Theatre: Circus of Fear (1978) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Grand entertainment.
29 March 2016 | by Hey_SwedenSee all my reviews

This viewer recently became aware of a genre of film known as "Krimi". Just as Italy has the "Giallo", Germany has the "Krimi", which is essentially crime and mystery fiction, based on works by the likes of Edgar Wallace. "Circus of Fear" itself is based on a Wallace novel, and scripted by producer Harry Alan Towers (using his pseudonym of Peter Welbeck). Originally, "Circus of Fear" was trimmed by almost half a hour upon its release in North America, and shown in black & white. This certainly must have made the plot confusing to audiences of the time.

In its full 91 minute incarnation, it tells the story of a daring daytime robbery of millions of bank notes, and how the money eventually makes its way to a circus run by Barberini (Anthony Newlands). While a dedicated police inspector named Elliott (the great Leo Genn) works the case, performers in this particular big top begin to be knocked off. There is no shortage of suspects. Could the perpetrator be hooded lion tamer Gregor (Sir Christopher Lee)? Knife thrower Mario (Maurice Kaufmann)? Or the diminutive, ironically named Mr. Big (ever delightful Skip Martin)?

Viewers will have fun following the twisty plot. As directed by John Llewellyn Moxey ("The City of the Dead", 'The Night Stalker'), this is appropriately colourful entertainment that takes full advantage of the circus setting. It's a well told tale that receives strong performances by much of the cast, although it's somewhat disappointing that co-star Klaus Kinski doesn't get more to do. Genn is wonderful as the detective, always amused by the foul temper of his superior Sir John (Cecil Parker), while Lee is typically commanding, no matter if his face is covered up or not. Heinz Drache as ringmaster Carl, Eddi Aren't as comedy relief character Eddie, lovely ladies Margaret Lee & Suzy Kendall, and Victor Maddern as robbery participant Mason round out a sterling group of actors.

A good, solid film overall that I would easily recommend to others.

Eight out of 10.


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