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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.


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





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


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


Nine Gruesome Curses! See more »


Comedy | Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Dr. Phibes' first words are spoken 32 minutes into the movie. See more »


Using neither club nor injection needle, Phibes seems to render the chauffeur unconscious (for hours) with a Vulcan nerve pinch from Star Trek. See more »


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

Crazy Credits

The cast list is divided into five sections: 'The Protagonists', 'The Girl', 'The Victims', 'The Law' and 'Interested Parties'. See more »

Alternate Versions

The Spanish language version features an almost completely different music soundtrack. The French version also features some subtle differences. See more »


Referenced in House of the Gorgon (2019) See more »


Written by Lew Pollack and Erno Rapee
Courtesy of The Big Three Music Co.
(played during Nurse Allen's murder scene)
See more »

User Reviews

If you like this, you will love RAIMI's DARKMAN
12 December 2001 | by Gulag-2See all my reviews

Phibes is a very cool character. He's not only a "mad doctor" at 100% but also one of the ultimate "bogey men". This guy is a genius, his mind is by far superior to everyone else's. At the same time, he's a psycho monster (disfigured and totally twisted) moved by "revenge". Phibes uses to hide himself into the darkness (he wears masks to reproduce his former human facade) and he's extremely...ehm... dangerous. There is a similar character. The unfogettable "DARKMAN", played by Liam Neeson and created by the evil mind of SAM RAIMI. Darkman is the definitive "bogey man", a disfigured psycho hero with unknown faculties, searching for revenge against his enemies who disfigured HIM. In the while, he can assume alternate identities with special syntethic skinned masks. In fact, he was a scientist, a genius. I advice YOU. Rent Phibes, then buy Darkman. You will be not disappointed by these two great heroes, surely the darkest movie characters in history. Both the movies are stunning Horror/action/adventure/drama/comedy mixs...please, don't miss them. Revenge is the medicine, of course.

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English | Hebrew

Release Date:

18 May 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dr. Phibes See more »


Box Office


GBP300,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

MGM-EMI See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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