Dr Terror’s House of Horrors (1965)

UK, 1965
35mm film, Techniscope, Technicolor, 2.35:1
mono, English

A British anthology horror film directed by Freddie Francis.

Plot Summary

Five people aboard a train are joined by a fortune teller who reads their Tarot cards and tells five grisly stories: an architect encounters a vengeful werewolf; a doctor is horrified to learn that his new wife is really a vampire; a carnivorous plant traps a group of people in a house; a musician steals music from a voodoo priest, with terrible consequences; and an art critic is tormented by a disembodied hand.


* = uncredited

Directed by: Freddie Francis
© MCMLXIV [1964] Amicus Productions Ltd
Amicus Productions presents an Amicus production
Produced by: Milton Subotsky and Max J. Rosenberg
Production Manager: Ted Wallis
Screenplay by: Milton Subotsky
Assistant Director: Bert Batt
Continuity: Pauline Harlow
Director of Photography: Alan Hume
Camera Operator: Godfrey Godar
Photographed in Technicolor and Techniscope
Film Editor: Thelma Connell
Music Composed by: Elisabeth Lutyens
Conducted by: Philip Martell
Songs by: Kenny Lynch
Jazz Music: Tubby Hayes
Steel Band Leader: Russ Henderson
Sound Recordist: Buster Ambler
Director of Sound: John Cox
Dubbing Editor: Roy Hyde
Wardrobe Supervisor: Bridget Sellers
Make-up: Roy Ashton
Hairdresser: Frieda Steiger
Special Effects: Ted Samuels
Art Director: Bill Constable
Choreography: Boscoe Holder
Produced at: Shepperton Studios, Shepperton, Surrey, UK

[closing credits]
Peter Cushing (Dr Terror [Dr Sandor Schreck])

Neil McCallum [Jim Dawson]
Ursula Howells [Deirdre Biddulph]
Peter Madden [Caleb]
Katy Wild [Valda]

Creeping Vine
Alan Freeman (Bill Rogers)
Ann Bell (Ann Rogers)
Sarah Nicholls [real name: Phoebe Nicholls] (Carol Rogers)
Bernard Lee (Hopkins)
Jeremy Kemp (Drake)

Roy Castle (Biff Bailey)
Kenny Lynch (Sammy Coin)
Christopher Carlos (musician)
The Tubby Hayes Quintet

Disembodied Hand
Christopher Lee (Franklyn Marsh)
Michael Gough (Eric Landor)

Donald Sutherland (Bob Carroll)
Jennifer Jayne (Nicolle)
Max Adrian (Doctor Blake)

Harold Lang
Edward Underdown
Isla Blair
Al Mulock
Judy Cornwell
Hedger Wallace
Laurie Leigh
Brian Hawkins
John Martin
Faith Kent
Kenneth Kove
Frank Forsyth
Walter Sparrow
Frank Barry
Irene Richmond
Thomas Baptiste
Valerie St. Clair
Russ Henderson Steel Band
George Mossman [pony and trap driver] *

Alternative Titles

Le cinque chiavi del terrore – Italian title
Gabinet grozy doktora zgrozy – Polish title
Die Todeskarten des Dr Schreck – German title
Le Train des épouvantes РFrench title

Extracts included in
House of Cards (2015)


Monthly Film Bulletin vol.32 no.374 (March 1965) p.39
“Except perhaps in the fourth story, which borrows freely from The Beast with Five Fingers, this horror anthology is filmically near-negligible compared to the best of Riccardo Freda. Moreover it lapses into crudity in the weakest, Voodoo story, with too many brash comedy asides from Roy Castle and others. Yet four of the stories are undeniably compulsive, thanks to ironic variations played on familiar routines, and to several strong performances. […] Peter Cushing’s unshaven, mittened Death ties the stories neatly together; and the denouement has an adequately apocalyptic flavour.” – from an uncredited review

Variety 3 March 1965
“Five short horror episodes, thinly linked, provide a usefully chilly package deal which will offer audiences several mild shudders and quite a lot of amusement. […] [T]he film has good production values and several imaginative directing touches. […] These playlets are insufficiently developed to sustain prolonged interest, though one or two of them, notably the creeping vine and the voodoo disaster, merit deeper treatment, but they provide some useful thesping changes. Cushing has little to do, but Christopher Lee as the art critic and Michael Gough as his artist victim are vivid characters. Roy Castle makes his first screen appearance effectively as the pop musician.” – from a review by Rich


Alien Worlds no.14 (March 1965) pp.20-21 – illustrated review (Vision by Alan Dodd)
The Daily Cinema no.9018 (22 January 1965) p.11 – note (Trade shows)
The Daily Cinema no.9019 (25 January 1965) p.11 – note (Trade shows)
The Daily Cinema no.9021 (29 January 1965) p.7 – note (Trade shows)
The Daily Cinema no.9022 (1 February 1965) pp.7; 9 – credits, synopsis, review (by P.J.D.); note (Trade shows), note (General Releases – North London)
Monthly Film Bulletin vol.32 no.374 (March 1965) p.39 – credits, synopsis, review
Variety 3 March 1965 – credits, review
We Belong Dead Amicus Special Spring 2021 pp.11-15 – illustrated review (by Aaron AuBuchon)

Reference Guide to Fantastic Films by Walt Lee p.108 – credits

Other sources
British National Film Catalogue vol.3 (1965) – credits