Friday, July 16, 2010
THE ABOMINABLE DR. PHIBES!
I went to the library intent on getting something stupid to watch, and boy did I succeed with The Abominable Dr Phibes! Starring Vincent Price (in his big 100th film!) as the fabulous Phibes, a becaped, pipe organ playing superghoul who's never too busying with his crazed murdering to enyoy a waltz with his undead bride or a nice dry martini, poured down the hole in his neck from whence his croaky proclomations of doom doth utter!
The deal is, a team of nine eminent surgeons and one perky nurse fail to save a concert organists beautiful young wife, and he prompty drives his car off a cliff in a frenzy of greif. Some years later, they come back from the dead to inflict a fabulous revenge on their wrongdoers, with each mind boggling murder inspired by one of the ten plagues visited on the Pharoahs in the bible. It's frogs, locusts and rats a go go, baby!
The production design is all done in wonderfully colourful, London '69 style, and the pacing is bracingly brisk! Unlike most B movies, which dole out the action sparingly between oodles of yawnsome line reading, this is basically one fiendishly ingenious supermurder after another, with occasional interjections from big-nosed cockney policemen saying 'he's a queer one that Dr. Phibes, inni?', and nice scenes of Phibes and his wife lamping in their ghost mansion, romacing to the sound of his life size tin wind-up big band. Price has some wonderful latex outfits and his glowing red pipe organ is a thing to behold, as is his fabulous hair and trademark ham.
I squealed with delight the whole way, and I wait with baited breath for evening when Dr Phibes Rises Again!