Horror Film Friday: The Abominable Dr. Phibes


The Abominable Dr. Phibes


The Abominable Dr. Phibes
Classic Horror Film 
Released 1971
A doctor, scientist, organist, and biblical scholar, Anton Phibes, seeks revenge on the nine doctors he considers responsible for his wife's death.

Catch it @ Amazon

My Thoughts

Vincent Price plays a distraught husband who wears far too much pancake makeup. He lost his wife due to the incompetence of nine doctors (or so he believes). He’s living a very strange existence in a colorfully decorated mansion with an automaton band and a lovely mute young lady who dresses in some beautifully strange and increasingly bizarre outfits that I would love to own. She assists him in his elaborate scheme of revenge when she's not busy dancing around the mansion with him. He spends his free time banging furiously away at an organ and putting on his face but I won’t judge. We can’t all be as lucky as Vladislav here.


For some unknown reason, he decides to kill each doctor based on biblical methods. I didn’t quite get that bit or all the references, maybe it was a 70’s thing or maybe it’s because I never paid attention in Sunday School. There is death by bats, a brass unicorn, broccoli syrup and locusts and even a frog mask.


It’s madness and it is glorious. There is even one scene that was totally ripped off by the entire Saw franchise. I was so surprised to see such goofy inventiveness in the deaths. Final Destination and Saw have nothing on Dr. Phibes! It's also pretty hilarious as the investigator on the case is clearly incompetent and made the butt of many a joke.  Price hams it up in the roll and brings a layer of romantic tragedy to this zany story and I just can’t resist a romantic murderer (unless, of course, he’s that whiny-ass baby-man Erik from Phantom of the Opera). 


Anyway, I couldn’t peel my eyes away. I set out intending to watch the film a half hour at a time while I folded laundry, which is pretty much how I watch everything, but I couldn’t bring myself to shut it off and cook dinner. Count Chocula for dinner? Perfect.

If you haven’t seen it and are weird enough to enjoy this kind of thing find yourself some time and settle in for some gruesome fun!

Comments

  1. I need to look for this one - I love Vincent Price!

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    1. It holds so much cheesy goodness. You must see it :)

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  2. I remember loving this one way back when. And anything with Vincent Price in it was a must watch for me.

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    1. I have the sequel DVR'd! Can't wait to find time to watch.

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  3. I love Vincent Price! I agree with Laura, anything with him in it is a must-see. :)

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    1. I've missed so many. I'm trying to catch up on all of these old classics.

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  4. It's many years since I last saw this film...I can barely remember anything about it now! Love Vincent Price! He was perfect for 'Thriller'

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  5. I love Vincent Price and I don't think I've seen this one! I'm so glad you reviewed it.

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  6. This is one of my all time favorite movies - it could be because I first watched it with my daddy (yeah, every dad sits down with their 7 year old and watches horror movies right?) - and I do so love Vincent...this is just a glorious movie!

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    1. It was so glorious. I recently watched the sequel but it didn't quite have the same magic for me. Probably because the first was such a lovely surprise and the second was basically more of the same without the element of surprise the second time around.

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