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The Comedy Of Terrors [DVD]


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Product details

  • Actors: Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Boris Karloff, Joyce Jameson, Joe E. Brown
  • Directors: Jacques Tourneur
  • Producers: Anthony Carras
  • Format: PAL
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.66:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Optimum Home Releasing
  • DVD Release Date: 12 Jan 2009
  • Run Time: 84 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001KWHOEW
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 74,702 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Horror comedy starring Vincent Price and Peter Lorre. When business gets slack and money gets a bit tight at Hinchley and Trumbull undertakers, Waldo Trumbull (Price) decides that the time has come to do something about it. He and his assistant, Felix Gillie (Lorre), go out at night with the intention of creating some business of their own. The film also stars the legendary Boris Karloff and Basil Rathbone.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By M. Dowden HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 6 April 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
At last I have now got a copy of this film; I have seen it quite a few times on tv but now I can watch it whenever I like. I am always amazed when I find someone who has never seen or even heard of this, as it is so funny.

Set somewhere in New England in the latter part of the nineteenth century Vincent Price has taken over the proprietorship of a funeral parlour from his father-in-law, played by Boris Karloff. For his assistant he has Peter Lorre. With business being slow there is only one answer, drum up your own trade, but things are never that simple. With Price drinking all the time, trying to poison his father-in-law and despairing of his wife's singing, he doesn't ham up his role as he does do magnificently in other movies. Instead the hamming up goes to Basil Rathbone in a fantastic cameo role of Mr Black. Mr Black is a cataleptic and just when you think he is dead, up he pops again. Added to this he keeps spouting random lines from 'Macbeth', bringing in an unforgettable performance.

If you have never seen this before then you don't know what you are missing, this is a brilliant black comedy.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Ken McCormac on 23 Jan 2010
Format: DVD
Great horror-style comedy with struggling undertakers Vincent Price and Peter Lorre with Boris Karloff.Money,lust and alcohol all play a part in this murderous plot with veteran Basil Rathbone stealing the acting honours with his near cameo part.A late-night giggle.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A.McGrath TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 27 Mar 2011
Format: DVD
I can't stop laughing at this film and can't praise it highly enough. It's extremely well crafted and wonderfully executed. It has superb comedic acting from a superb cast, even down to Cleopatra the cat. Hilarious! Basil Rathbone reciting from Macbeth, Karloff's senility, the unforgettable "nightingale" voice of Joyce Jameson, Lorre's pathos and of course Price's presence make this a great piece of very funny story telling. I don't know anyone who hasn't found this film a riot. For the purists, there are a few niggles with the transfer, but not enough to spoil the enjoyment of the performance.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Sarah Moorin on 7 Mar 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I love this film because it reunited vincent price,boris karloff and peter lorre that was really good because these are three of my fav actors.Now this is totally different to any vincent price film because it is so funny and all his other films are serious and scary and this one is so funny.Anybody who loves these actors or whose new to seeing these actors this is a great place to start. More info about it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Autonome on 28 Feb 2013
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
It would be the last time that genius actors Vincent Price, Peter Lorre and Boris Karloff would star together, following their amazing success in "The Raven" and "Tales of Terror".
Richard Matheson was very keen to write a sequel to "Comedy..." but unfortunately the poor box office success of the film didn't warrant it. On top of this, Peter Lorre died on March 23 1964, almost exactly two months after the release of this film.
But I tell you, this infernal trio left on a high. "The Comedy of Terror" is an amazingly funny, extremely well-performed film, but the actors had their job made tremendously easier by the jewel script of Richard Matheson. The minor flaws we had spotted in "The Raven" have all but disappeared here and Matheson writes a completely bonkers plot, with outrageous pieces of dialogue. Once the script is written, Matheson can unleash his actors in front of the camera and it is a complete riot. The three most impressive in this team work are probably Boris Karloff, subdued and objectively "absent" as the ancient of the family (whom he was), Basil Rathbone, who spends the movie trying NOT to be dead by uttering MacBeth quotes without interruption and the insanely beautiful and funny Joyce Jameson, the lungs who wish they were an opera singer. The cat is also very good. Price and Lorre do their Laurel-Hardy type routine with genius but people around them are as good as they are so: sit back, enjoy and lament the fact that they don't do it this way anymore...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Victor HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on 4 May 2012
Format: DVD
Legends Peter Lorre, Boris Karloff, Vincent Price and Basil Rathbone on the same bill? This was a film I just had to watch! And the quartet of movie maestros do not disappoint, delivering a glorious funny macabre gothic horror/ grand guignol of the highest order.

It's a delightful set up. A drunken Vincent Price in 1800s New England runs a funeral parlour, along with his colleague, a hapless Peter Lorre. He lives with his aspiring opera singer wife, and father in law Boris Karloff (from whom he inherited the business). Business is slow, and he realises that a few strategic deaths around the town would not only give him a bit of trade, but also sort out a few other problems, such as not having to pay rent. Price and Lorre play off each other perfectly as two men who hate each other, but are chained together by their own mediocrity. They make the world's worst murderers, especially when it comes to bumping off a delightfully hammy Basil Rathbone. The film works its way through a typically farcical plot full of wild improbabilities and hilarious situations to arrive at a final shattering ending that is both tragic and hilarious. And perfectly played out.

It's dark, it's tragic and it's hilarious. The comic timing of all the principles is just perfect, whether it be the (rare) knockabout slapstick moments or the delivery of killer one liners. Price attacks his role with a certain amount of manic glee, and is in danger of dominating the film with a grandiloquent and majestic performance which actually has a bit of subtlety and nuance. Lorre is perfect as his bumbling partner, while Rathbone and Karloff, two veterans of the screen, battle hard to steal every scene from Price and nearly succeed.
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