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Tales from the Crypt (1972)

PG | | Horror | 9 March 1972 (USA)
Five strangers get lost in a crypt and, after meeting the mysterious Crypt Keeper, receive visions of how they will die.

Director:

Freddie Francis

Writers:

Milton Subotsky (screenplay), Al Feldstein (stories) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ralph Richardson ... The Crypt Keeper (as Sir Ralph Richardson)
Geoffrey Bayldon ... Guide
Joan Collins ... Joanne Clayton (segment "And All Through the House")
Martin Boddey ... Husband (segment "And All Through the House")
Chloe Franks ... Daughter (segment "And All Through The House")
Oliver MacGreevy Oliver MacGreevy ... Maniac (segment "And All Through the House")
Ian Hendry ... Carl Maitland (segment "Reflection of Death")
Susan Denny Susan Denny ... Wife (segment "Reflection of Death")
Angela Grant Angela Grant ... Susan (segment "Reflection of Death") (as Angie Grant)
Peter Cushing ... Grimsdyke (segment "Poetic Justice")
Robin Phillips ... Elliot (segment "Poetic Justice")
David Markham David Markham ... Father (segment "Poetic Justice")
Robert Hutton ... Neighbour (segment "Poetic Justice")
Richard Greene ... Jason (segment "Wish You Were Here")
Barbara Murray ... Enid (segment "Wish You Were Here")
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Storyline

Five persons are visiting a catacomb following a guide and get lost. They find that they are trapped in a crypt and, out of the blue, they see The Crypt Keeper (Ralph Richardson) that tells five stories: (1) And All through the House: On Christmas Eve, Joanne Clayton kills her husband expecting to receive his insurance. She hears on the news that the police are seeking-out a serial-killer posing of Santa Claus. When the man knocks on her door, she can not call the police since the body of her husband lays on the living room, and Joanne locks windows and doors. When she looks for her daughter, she has a lethal surprise. (2) Reflection of Death: Carl Maitland leaves his wife and children and leaves town with his mistress. However something happens during their journey (3) Poetic Justice: The widower janitor Arthur Edward Grimsdyke is a good man that spends his leisure time with the children from the neighborhood. His heartless neighbor James Elliot does not like him and destroys his ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

DEATH LIVES in the Vault of Horror!

Genres:

Horror

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 March 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cuentos de ultratumba See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£170,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$3,000,000, 31 December 1972
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The sequence in the segment "Wish You Were Here", where the car is pursued by the motorcyclist was filmed not on a public highway, but at the Alpine Circuit at Millbrook test track, often featured in motoring magazines and programs. It was also used for sections of the Michael Gothard Vs Police car chase in Scream and Scream Again (1970). See more »

Goofs

Just before Joanne reaches for the phone as she crawls beneath the second window, the reflection of a still photographer can be seen in the window above her. He lifts the camera as if to take a still shot. The scene cuts to a closeup and the view has changed and the reflection is no longer seen. (There is a publicity photo of Joan Collins crouched under the window holding the phone in existence.) See more »

Quotes

Ralph Jason: [Revived to life, twitching and screaming in pain] Oh, Enid!
Enid Jason: [Yelling towards the front door] Charles!
Ralph Jason: Help me!
Charles Gregory: [walks in] What's happened?
[to Enid]
Charles Gregory: What have you done?
Enid Jason: I wished him alive again... forever!
Charles Gregory: Don't you realize he's been embalmed? His veins are filled with embalming fluid, burning into him!
Enid Jason: [Sobbing] Oh, no!
Ralph Jason: [Screaming] Enid, do something! For God's sake, Enid, help me!
[...]
See more »

Alternate Versions

In order to receive a cinematic "X" rating from the BBFC, a brief close up of a man's exposed intestines was removed. The same print was later released on video by CBS/Fox in 1988. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: Tennis the Menace (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

O Come, All Ye Faithful
(uncredited)
Music by John Francis Wade
Lyrics by Frederick Oakeley
See more »

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User Reviews

Nice collection of bitter little tales
18 May 2004 | by Poseidon-3See all my reviews

Based on the old (and rather controversial) E.C. Comics of the mid-20th century, this horror anthology is an above average entry in an intriguing (and all but dead) genre. Here there is a tour group seen roaming through some ancient catacombs with five attendees obstinately staying behind, despite numerous warnings to stick close together. They find themselves severed from the group and wind up in a tomb-like room with creepy Richardson in a monk's robe doling out orders and insights. The quintet is made to sit while each one gets a glimpse into his or her recent life. Thus the five brief stories are presented in order, each one with a morbid, ironic or gory twist to it. Collins (looking svelte and attractive) is in the first one. She splits her husband's head open as he's benignly reading the newspaper while cheery Christmas music plays on the soundtrack. (Hilariously, she kicks him down the steps while "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" drones on.) Before she can properly dispose of his body, an escaped mental patient in a Santa suit starts terrorizing her! Then Hendry is shown leaving his wife and children for a younger woman. A fateful experience on the freeway changes his life forever. Next up, snooty Phillips is being driven up the wall by his neighbor - kindly, but eccentric, old man Cushing. Phillips continuously thwarts Cushing until he gives up...but does he? A fourth tale features Greene (as a greedy gunrunner) who is forced to part with his possessions, but his wife spies an inscription on an old statuette and discovers that she can use it to ask for three wishes. This doesn't work out quite as optimistically as she had hoped. Finally, Patrick is a militant, heartless administrator of a home for the blind. He pushes the male inhabitants there to their limit and winds up paying dearly for his sins. Though no story gets enough time spent on it to really flesh it out to it's greatest potential, most of them are really intriguing and usually very well acted. The spareness of the locations and effects help set a rather desolate and chilly mood. The finest acting is probably provided by Cushing in a very atypical role. The most memorable vignette is the last one which features an unforgettable comeuppance. Fans of British horror (and especially of anthologies) will rank this pretty highly, but it's interesting enough to lure other viewers as well.


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