The Abominable Dr Phibes (1971)


Doctors are being murdered in a bizarre manner: bats, bees, killer frog masks, etc., which represent the nine Biblical plagues. The crimes are orchestrated by a demented organ player with the help of his mute assistant. The detective is stumped until he finds that all of the doctors being killed assisted a Dr. Vesalius on an unsuccessful operation involving the wife of Dr. Phibes, but he couldn’t be the culprit, could he? He was killed in a car crash upon learning of his wife’s death…

Dr. Phibes takes his inspiration for the murders from the Old Testament.

– The Ten Plagues Of Egypt –

Boils: Prof. Thornton is stung to death by bees

Bats: Dr. Dunwoody is mauled to death by bats

Frogs: Dr. Hargreaves’s head is crushed by a mechanical mask of a frog

Blood: Dr. Longstreet has all the blood drained out of his body

Hail: Dr. Hedgepath is frozen to death by a machine spewing ice

Rats: Dr. Kitaj crashes his plane when attacked by rats

Beasts: Dr. Whitcombe is impaled by a brass unicorn head

Locusts: Nurse Allen is eaten by locusts

Death of the first born: Phibes kidnaps and attempts to kill Dr. Vesalius’s son Lem

Darkness: At the ambiguous ending, Phibes drains the blood from his own body while injecting embalming fluid, apparently joining his wife in death.


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