The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971)

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  • Release Date:  1971
  • Genre:  Slasher
  • Director:  Robert Fuest
  • Screenwriter:  James Whiton, William Goldstein
  • Cast & Crew: Vincent Price, Joseph Cotten, Hugh Griffith, Terry-Thomas, Virginia North, Peter Jeffrey, Derek Godfrey, Norman Jones, John Cater, Aubrey Woods, John Laurie, Maurice Kaufmann, Barbara Keogh, Sean Bury, Susan Travers

The Abominable Dr Phibes 1971 Rating:

  • Dylan = 8 / 10;
  • Raoul = 8.5 / 10;
  • IMDB = 7.2 / 10;
  • Rotten Tomatoes = 7.5 / 10

The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971) Synopsis:

A vengeful doctor kills his victims following the pattern of the nine plagues of Egypt.

The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971) Review:

The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971) is an often under-looked classic of horror cinema that hasn’t aged a bit. Bringing great horror scenes, lots of suspense and a set of terrific murders, that film is one of the very best of its time.

The entertainment starts immediately with the film depicting a series of impressively devious murders. The police investigation aspect of the film maintains the suspense, while you get to understand what is happening hand in hand with the main detective.

But the true beauty of the film lies in the ingenuity behind the murders. They are elaborated and extravagant, and in many ways this film could be seen as the early ancestor of the Saw franchise, except with a much better villain. Indeed, the character of Dr. Phibes is a fascinating one, full of surprises until the very end.


The film is often listed as a comedy, which I found quite misleading. There are indeed a few funny scenes and absurd dialogues, but the overall tone of the film is more dramatic, not to say tragic because of the vengeful love of the doctor which is, in a way, quite touching.

I only saw this classic quite recently because I always thought that it wasn’t really a horror film. Please don’t do the same mistake, for The Abominable Dr. Phibes is a truly magnificent piece of horror cinema!

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