House of Wax (1953)

A NEW BEGINNING

Following a comedic turn in one of his favourite films, Champagne for Caesar, the freelancing Vincent Price ditched Hollywood once again to tread the boards once more, including replacing Charles Laughton in a touring company of Don Juan in Hell, and, later, roles in Richard III and Black-Eyed Susan (his last stage turn until 1968’s Darling of the Day).

Price’s fortunes changed forever, however, when he accepted the lead role in Warner Bros’ 3D horror melodrama, House of Wax (an update of the 1930s classic, Mystery in the Wax Museum). It was one of the studio’s biggest hits and Price’s nuanced performance as vengeful sculptor turned serial killer, Henry Jarrod, brought him offers for two more 3D outings, The Mad Magician and Dangerous Mission (from future ‘Master of Disaster’ Irwin Allen), as well as roles in a variety of projects that tapped into the cultured malevolence that was becoming Price’s stock in trade (of note is his excellent turn as conman James Addison Reavis in The Baron of Arizona). He was also a regular on a host of television productions (from game shows to live dramas) and his mellifluous voice was used to great effect in a host of radio dramas, including Escape and Suspense.

But it was Vincent’s presence in 20th Century Fox’s ‘atoms gone wild!’ sci-fi blockbuster The Fly and his association with William Castle’s gimmick-laden House on Haunted Hill and The Tingler that sealed his horror credentials. By the end of the decade, Price’s career was at an all-time high – and things were just about to get even better.

Click on the (red) links up for a review of the film, plus sound and vision clips. The links in (orange) designate a clip, trailer or the full film. The links in (pale orange) are extra features for your reading pleasure.

THE INDEPENDENT YEARS

Champagne for Caesar, 1950 (TRAILER) + (SCREEN GUILD THEATER RADIO PLAY)

The Baron of Arizona, 1950 (FULL FILM)

Curtain Call at Cactus Creek, 1950

His Kind of Woman, 1951 + (TRAILER)

Adventures of Captian Fabian, 1951 (CLIP ONLY)

The Las Vegas Story, 1952 + (TRAILER)

A NEW BEGINNING

House of Wax, 1953 + (TRAILER, PATHE NEWSREEL)

Dangerous Mission, 1954 + (TRAILER)

Casanova’s Big Night, 1954 (TRAILER)

The Mad Magician, 1954 + (TRAILER, FULL FILM)
– Feature extra: Indicator Blu-Ray 

Son of Sinbad, 1955 (TRAILER)

Serenade, 1956 + (VP SCENE, TRAILER)

While the City Sleeps, 1956 + (TRAILER)

The Ten Commandments, 1956 (TRAILER)

The Story of Mankind, 1957

The Fly, 1958 + (TRAILER, FULL FILM)

House on Haunted Hill, 1958 + (FULL FILM)

The Big Circus, 1959 (FULL FILM via Internet Archive)

The Bat, 1959 + (FULL FILM)

Return of the Fly, 1959 (TRAILER)

The Tingler, 1959 + (TRAILER, FULL FILM)