Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

THE ABOMINABLE DR. PHIBES

Vincent Price
THE ABOMINABLE DR. PHIBES (1971). Director: Robert Fuest.

Many years ago the wife of Dr. Anton Phibes died on the operating table,and he himself was incinerated in an auto crash. Or was he? Now the members of the medical staff who attended Mrs. Phibes are being murdered one by one, in manners that relate to the ten biblical curses of the Pharaohs. One poor man is attacked by blood-thirsty bats, while another is given a toad mask to wear that eventually crushes his head. Terry-Thomas has all of the blood removed from his body, quart by quart. The head surgeon, Dr. Vesalius (Joseph Cotten) is warned by Inspector Trout (Peter Jeffrey) that his first-born son (Sean Bury) may be in deadly danger... The Abominable Dr. Phibes is a zesty, well-acted black comedy that is as gruesome as it as comical. Price [Tower of London], Cotten [Half Angel] and Jeffrey are all excellent. Phibes' lovely assistant Vulnavia (Virginia North) has no dialogue, and neither does Caroline Munro, who stands in for the late Victoria Phibes. Followed by Dr. Phibes Rises Again. Fuest also directed the terrible Devil's Rain.

Verdict: As delightful as it is appalling, and definitely not abominable. ***.

4 comments:

Neil A Russell said...

One of the biggest laughs I ever had was watching this on a Saturday afternoon on a local Atlanta station. During the break the voice over announcement said "We will return to the Abominable Dr Feebees right after this".
That's been almost 40 years and it still cracks me up.

Very entertaining movie as well!

William said...

"Feebees!" -- that's great!

angelman66 said...

Yayy, this film is on MGM HD all this month for Halloween! Bill, you have whet my appetite to see this one again!
Lots of other Vincent Price classics are on all month long too....

William said...

I'll have to check out MGM HD immediately. Thanks for the heads up!