6.6/10
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Spirits of the Dead (1968)

Histoires extraordinaires (original title)
Anthology film from three European directors based on stories by Edgar Allan Poe: a cruel princess haunted by a ghostly horse, a sadistic young man haunted by his double, and an alcoholic actor haunted by the Devil.

Writers:

Edgar Allan Poe (story "Metzengerstein") (as Edgar Allan Poë), Roger Vadim (adaptation) | 8 more credits »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brigitte Bardot ... Giuseppina (segment "William Wilson")
Alain Delon ... William Wilson (segment "William Wilson")
Jane Fonda ... Contessa Frederique de Metzengerstein (segment "Metzengerstein")
Terence Stamp ... Toby Dammit (segment "Toby Dammit")
James Robertson Justice ... Countess' Advisor (segment "Metzengerstein")
Salvo Randone ... Priest (segment "Toby Dammit")
Françoise Prévost ... Friend of Countess (segment "Metzengerstein") (as Francoise Prevost)
Peter Fonda ... Baron Wilhelm Berlifitzing (segment "Metzengerstein")
Marlène Alexandre Marlène Alexandre ... (segment "Metzengerstein")
David Bresson David Bresson
Katia Christine ... Young girl on the dissection table (segment "William Wilson") (as Katia Christina)
Peter Dane Peter Dane
Georges Douking ... Le licier (segment "Metzengerstein")
Philippe Lemaire ... Philippe (segment "Metzengerstein")
Carla Marlier ... Claude (segment "Metzengerstein")
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Storyline

Three directors each adapt a Poe short story to the screen: "Toby Dammit" features a disheveled, drugged and drunk English movie star who nods acceptance in the Italian press and his producers fawn over him. "Metzengerstein" features a medieval countess who has a love-hate relationship with a black stallion - who, it turns out, is really her dead lover. "William Wilson" tells the story of a sadistic Austrian student with an exact double whom he later kills. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Edgar Allen Poe's ultimate orgy! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France | Italy

Language:

French | Italian | English

Release Date:

23 July 1969 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Spirits of the Dead See more »

Filming Locations:

Bergamo, Lombardia, Italy See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Electric)

Color:

Color | Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Terence Stamp and Peter Fonda worked together again many years later in The Limey (1999). See more »

Goofs

During the final card game between Wilson (Alain Delon) and Giuseppina (Brigitte Bardot), Wilson deals himself two cards in a row during the final hand. He should have dealt Giuseppina a fifth card first before taking his. See more »

Quotes

TV Reporter #4: Do you think you're neurotic?
Toby Dammit (segment "Toby Dammit"): It's my one quality.
TV Reporter #4: What is amiss in your life, Mr. Dammit?
Toby Dammit (segment "Toby Dammit"): I'm happy and it drives me to despair.
TV Reporter #4: Is it true you've done unsavory jobs?
Toby Dammit (segment "Toby Dammit"): Yes... yes... but... I've never been a TV reporter.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The whipping of Giuseppina was cut in the original 1973 UK cinema release (titled "Tales of Mystery"), and subsequent releases were also edited. The 15-rated 1986 video (as "Powers of Evil") completely missed the entire 'William Wilson' story, and the 18-rated 1990 French Collection VHS (titled "Histoires Extraordinaires: Tales of Mystery and Imagination") received over a minute of cuts to the whipping scene and shots of Wilson caressing a girl with a scalpel. The Arrow blu-ray release (titled "Spirits of the Dead") is the full uncut version. See more »

Connections

Edited into Fellini: I'm a Born Liar (2002) See more »

Soundtracks

Ruby
Sung by Ray Charles
Lyrics by Mitchell Parish
Music by Heinz Roemheld
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Skip to Fellini
6 August 2001 | by johnston.scotSee all my reviews

Three separate stories:

  • Skip the first one. Just do it. If you really must ogle the young Jane Fonda, get Barbarella.


  • Your call on the second one. Okay, but not memorable.


The third story makes the film. It's "Fellini-esque"! Fellini's wild imagery makes narrative sense (well, sort of), when applied to the story of an addled English actor stumbling around Rome at breakneck speed. The segment also features a startlingly original image of evil (an "Anglican devil," I think that's the Terence Stamp character's phrase). Maybe it's just me, but the segment's conception of the devil is among the spookiest things I've ever seen on film; and when you get right down to it, it makes a lot more theological sense then ugly, scaly guys with tails.


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