Blu-ray Review: DR. TERROR’S HOUSE OF HORRORS

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DR. TERROR’S HOUSE OF HORRORS was directed by Freddie Francis and stars horror film royalty Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee and features a stellar cast of supporting players including Donald Sutherland, Max Adrian and Michael Gough.

This 1964 horror classic follows five men who board a train as strangers and soon find commonality when they’re joined by a sixth passenger, the mysterious traveler known as Dr. Schreck (Peter Cushing). To while away the time, the good doctor offers to read each passenger’s Tarot cards. The innocent parlor game has an unexpected conclusion as each reading unfolds on screen as a terrifying vignette (a werewolf on the loose; a vengeful creeping vine; a tale of voodoo; a disembodied hand coming to life; and a vampire story) the results of which are unpredictable and shocking.

As each man is faced to witness their doomed futures, it’s Dr, Shreck who is the ringmaster and the one laying down the cards determining their fate. Some aren’t as guilty in their crimes as the other ones but they all have one thing in common and that’s death.  Once their journey on the train ends, the five men hop off the train and suddenly realize they could have just met the Grimm Reaper. Freddie Francis was known for his horror classics like The Doctor and The Devils, Dracula Has Risen From The Grave and Tales From The Crypt and Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors fits perfectly with his impressive library of work.

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The writing for each segment was really interesting and all of the acting was great. Peter Cushing’s sinister character Dr. Shreck is the only thing that links these five men together as he reads out their doomed futures as their imaginations plays out their story for the viewer to watch unfold. There were also some neat looking old school practical effects used but there’s not a lot of blood and gore so don’t expect anything like that. Cheap gags and tricks were used like wires and strings, along with some simple lighting to bring these SFX to life.

The front of the packaging features the classic artwork you see up top and the back includes movie details, some images and credits. The Blu-ray disc also features some basic artwork. Inserting the disc, the menu screen was simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for this high-definition release were both really good. Olive Films did a great job with this first time high-def release for this old horror classic.

Bottom line is, Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors was a first time watch for this horror fan and it ended up being a really  entertaining watch. I enjoy old horror movies like these anyway and getting to see these Hollywood icons back in their prime is a pure treat. This old classic looks and sounds amazing in high-definition. The Blu-ray releases on Blu-ray for the first time ever in the U.S. on October 27th, just in time for Halloween, so be sure you give this one a watch.

Distributor: Olive Films

Run Time: 98 Minutes

Rated: Not Rated

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition Widescreen (2.35:1) / Region A

Blu-ray Audio: DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0

Subtitles: None

Special Features: None

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