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The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Horror | 18 May 1971 (USA)
A doctor, scientist, organist, and biblical scholar, Anton Phibes, seeks revenge on the nine doctors he considers responsible for his wife's death.

Director:

Robert Fuest
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vincent Price ... Dr. Anton Phibes
Joseph Cotten ... Dr. Vesalius
Virginia North ... Vulnavia
Terry-Thomas ... Dr. Longstreet
Sean Bury ... Lem Vesalius
Susan Travers ... Nurse Allen
David Hutcheson David Hutcheson ... Dr. Hedgepath
Edward Burnham ... Dr. Dunwoody
Alex Scott ... Dr. Hargreaves
Peter Gilmore ... Dr. Kitaj
Maurice Kaufmann ... Dr. Whitcombe
Peter Jeffrey ... Inspector Trout
Derek Godfrey Derek Godfrey ... Crow
Norman Jones ... Sgt. Tom Schenley
John Cater ... Superintendent Waverley
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Storyline

Doctors are being murdered in bizarre manners - bats, bees, a killer frog mask, etc. - which represent the nine Biblical plagues of Egypt. The crimes are orchestrated by an organ-playing, demented madman (from his home base, replete with a clockwork orchestra and help from a beautiful, mute assistant). Detectives are stumped until they find that all the slain doctors once assisted a Dr. Vesalius on an unsuccessful operation involving the wife of organist Dr. Phibes, killed in a car crash upon learning of his wife's death. He couldn't be the culprit, could he? Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

HE CAME BACK FROM THE DEAD FOR REVENGE with Nine Diabolical Curses ... BEES ... BATS ... BEASTS ... BLOOD ... FROGS ... HAIL ... LOCUSTS ... DARKNESS ... DEATH! THE ABOMINABLE DR. PHIBES ... the most terrifying film you will ever see! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some horror violence/gore | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Hebrew

Release Date:

18 May 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dr. Phibes See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

GBP300,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

MGM-EMI See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Originally advertised in the US with the tag line, "Love Means Never Having to Say You're Ugly," a parody of a famous line from Love Story (1970), which had been released the previous year; however, that was replaced after the first week, as opening box office was disappointing and it turned out audiences had no idea what sort of film this was supposed to be. A new advertising campaign made it clear it was a horror film, and afterwards it became a box-office hit. See more »

Goofs

When Vulnavia is wreaking Phibes' lair, she knocks the bass drum off the bandstand on to the dance floor. Later, when Trout, Crow and Vesalius approach the organ, the drum is nowhere to be seen. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Butler - Ross: Good morning, sir.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Phibes is heard laughing after the song and the credits end. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Vestron video release and the version shown on cable up until the mid-'90's also featured substituted music soundtracks. See more »

Connections

Edited into The Unauthorized Hagiography of Vincent Price (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Close Your Eyes
Written by Bernice Petkere
Courtesy of The Big Three Music Co.
(played on solo violin during Dr. Longstreet's murder scene)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Campy cult classic with perfect performance...
11 December 2004 | by dwpollarSee all my reviews

1st watched 12/11/2004 - 7 out of 10(DIr-Robert Fuest): Campy cult classic with perfect performance and role by Vincent Price who does most of the job through his facial expressions and presence. The story revolves around a dead-like "Dr. Phibes" playing his organ, directing music, dancing and ceremoniously killing off the surgeons who failed to fix his wife after a car accident. He uses the Pharoah's curses as the basis for each killing and he inventively makes each one unique and grins and even applauds himself after one demise. Some subtle British humor is also thrown in for extra but all that's needed with this one is Price and this role to make it classic horror-camp.


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