Theatre of Blood


Comedy / Crime / Drama / Fantasy / Horror


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May 20, 2014 at 12:22 PM



Diana Rigg as Edwina Lionheart
Vincent Price as Edward Kendal Sheridan Lionheart
Dennis Price as Hector Snipe
Robert Morley as Meredith Merridew
720p 1080p
808.87 MB
23.976 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 1 / 2
1.64 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 44 min
P/S 0 / 5

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Paul Andrews ([email protected]) 8 / 10

Brilliant Anglo horror & maybe Price's finest moment.

Theater of Blood is set in an early 70's London where famed theater critic George Maxwell (Michael Hordern) is asked to move on some homeless people squatting in a property he owns, however they turn on him & stab him to death. Several of George's peers & work colleagues are shocked to hear the news of his death & attend his funeral but are again shocked when a horse appears galloping along with another critic named Hector Snipe (Dennis Price) being dragged along behind it & throughly dead having also been murdered. The remaining critics are convinced that someone is out to get them, Inspector Boot (Milo O'Shea) is on the case but doesn't believe Peregrine Devlin's (Ian Hendry) theory that Shakespearean actor Edward Lionheart (Vincent Price) is responsible as he supposedly committed suicide even though his body was never found...

This British production was directed by Douglas Hickox & is a personal favourite of mine. The script by Anthony Greville-Bell has a deliciously dark comic premise of a disgruntled actor taking revenge on his critics in the style of Shakespeare, as a concept it works extremely well & is huge fun throughout. There's a surprising amount of gore & violence considering when this was made but it's more than welcome, the film moves along like a rocket & never bores although there's no mystery to what's happening & therefore it could be considered a little predictable. I love the little novelty death scenes which almost seem like little films in themselves at times, they're pretty imaginative & are good dark fun if you have a liking for the macabre. The character's are good as is the dialogue although the police come across as a bit stupid. There is one scene that I don't get though, it's when Horace has his head surgically cut off & the next morning the maid discovers him & his head falls on the floor but in the very next shot his head is impaled on the top of a milk bottle outside Devlin's apartment & I can't work out how got there.

Director Hickox does a good job & Theater of Blood was shot entirely on location in & around London which gives it a realistic look & feel. There's a nice darkly comic atmosphere to this throughout & Vincent Price is in his prime reciting Shakespeare badly & hamming it up as the villain, I mean he was born to play the part of Edward Lionheart & he apparently said this was his favourite film that he made & I can't really argue with him. There's a surprising amount of gore & exploitation here, there are impalement's, cut out hearts, stabbings, someone is forced to eat their own poodles, there are severed heads, a gory sword-fight, someone is electrocuted & a fair amount of blood.

Technically the film is fine with decent cinematography, impressive special effects & good locations. The theater used was the Putney Hippodrome in London which had been boarded up for years when used in this film, it makes for an imposing backdrop & you can see Price is in his element. The acting is pretty good from an impressive cast including Ian Hendry, Eric Sykes, Dennis Price, Arthur Lowe, Michael Hordern, Diana Dors & Diana Rigg who apparently also considers Theater of Blood as her best film. Vincent Price went on to marry Coral Browne who he met on this film, she's the critic who he electrocutes in the hair dressers!

Theater of Blood is a fantastic Anglo horror film that is a personal favourite of mine, it has a nice dark sense of humour & a fair amount of gore as well. I thought it was great it just worked, definitely worth a watch especially if your a horror or Vincent Price fan.

Reviewed by ldonley 8 / 10

The crowning moment of Vincent Price's career!

This movie is hilarious but disturbing. I found it in the local video store while searching for a copy of Kind Hearts and Coronets, and I'm afraid that at first, it suffered from invidious comparison. There are several graphic and prolonged death scenes that I really found repelling. Not only were they very ugly and presumably realistic, but the characters that were killed had become very dear to the audience, that is, me. Each of the ten victims is played by a veteran British or Australian character actor, each one a master at engaging the audience in a short amount of film time.

This said, I thoroughly enjoyed the writing, and the references to Shakespeare actually had me combing through our collected works at 12:30 a.m. Diana Rigg is perfect as Edwina--she's a Shakespeare pro, but perfectly captures several feminine ideals of the late sixties. Her appearance in mini and white platform boots is a shining example of mod glory, circa 1970.

I appreciated this film more when I remember that it was probably made as cheap horror film with added wit, rather than a clever comedy that went over the top with graphic violence. I believe my stomach actually turned at a few of the murders, even though I laughed out loud soon after.

Coral Browne was particularly funny, and there were definite sparks between her and Vincent Price in the beauty shop scene. (I remember reading about their real-life romance with glee, since they were both over 60 at the time.) I wish her scenes could have lasted longer.

I loved the wit, and thoroughly enjoyed seeing Vincent and Diana acting out snippets of scenes from some of the great plays. I also enjoyed the writer's skill at contemporary comedy and sly wordplay. Each character, played by a talented veteran, makes an indelible impression in their too-brief "hour upon the stage" before they depart and are seen no more. This film needed a curtain call at the end, just as in Shakespeare's time, so we could see the company of players one last time. I suppose the producers wouldn't go for it.

Although I enjoyed this movie, I couldn't bring myself to sit through the film a second time, even for the performances and dialogue. I just couldn't bear to watch all those death throes again.

Reviewed by Scarecrow-88 10 / 10

The Theatre That Oozed Style.

"To be or not to be..that is the question."

Lip-smacking, deliciously wicked horror comedy starring Vincent Price, in one of his finest roles, as an overwrought, lunatic thespian, Edward Lionheart, whose near entire vocabulary derives from Shakespeare in one or another, presumed dead via suicide because of a consensus group of harsh critics who didn't reward him with a prestigious theatrical statuette he felt belonged to him. With the assistance of his beloved daughter, Edwina(Diana Rigg), Edward will seek his revenge towards the critics circle who humiliated him with consistently bad reviews scoffing at his acting abilities as rubbish and heavy-handed. Edward, Edwina(wearing quite the dandy of a disguise)and a group of homeless wackos form a motley band of psychos who successfully eliminate members of the critics circle, one by one, finding inspiration from the murders of Shakespeare's works. The leader of the critics circle, and Edward's harshest critic, Devlin(Ian Hendry)will join forces with the police in trying to stop Edward before he slaughters all his colleagues..but, that will be quite a difficult task because Edward and the gang have plenty of clever tricks in store for their pursuers.

The whole movie feels like a satiric wink from Vincent Price, himself, towards those who had deemed him hammy over the years in his horror pictures. There's a particular scene, my favorite, where Lionheart squares off successfully in a fencing match with Devlin, having him completely cornered as he speaks for all the thespians who were destroyed by the pens of non-actors who used words as blunt instruments to forcefully ruin careers and lives. I felt strongly for the Lionheart character AND Price during this passionate dialogue which felt like a shout against all who dare criticize the work and dedication of individuals on the stage. There's a demented spirit at play in this flick, from the inspired performances, outrageously tongue-in-cheek murders, and in-your-face style..this is the perfect Price vehicle. The way Price's mad thespian uses paupers to serve his purposes murdering those critics, and various modern disguises he wears(..such as his afro hippie hair stylist, his masseuse, or his cook, often using thick accents as a bonus)add to the fun. Oh, and I loved his reenactments of the Bard in full costume and make-up, reciting the words with hammy aplomb..his devoted fans should love this film. Along with Phibes, THEATRE OF BLOOD predates the slasher genre, and we see how this film resembles the sub-genre's formula as Price and Rigg often kill their foes in imaginative and sick ways, as the police and Devlin are left frustrated. The climax in the burning theater as Price scales to the top with one last performance left in him is certainly a highlight.

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