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Circus of Fear [Import anglais]

3.5 étoiles sur 5 2 commentaires client

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Détails sur le produit

  • Acteurs : Christopher Lee, Leo Genn, Anthony Newlands, Heinz Drache, Eddi Arent
  • Réalisateurs : John Llewellyn Moxey, Werner Jacobs
  • Scénaristes : Harry Alan Towers, Edgar Wallace
  • Producteurs : David Henley, Harry Alan Towers
  • Format : Anamorphique, NTSC, Import
  • Audio : Anglais (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Région : Toutes les régions
  • Rapport de forme : 1.66:1
  • Nombre de disques : 1
  • Studio : Blue Underground
  • Date de sortie du DVD : 30 septembre 2003
  • Durée : 90 minutes
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 3.5 étoiles sur 5 2 commentaires client
  • ASIN: B000096I9T
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 117.352 en DVD & Blu-ray (Voir les 100 premiers en DVD & Blu-ray)
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Par Michel Juvenet TOP 1000 COMMENTATEURS le 25 septembre 2007
Format: DVD Achat vérifié
Nous trouvons ici toutes les caractéristiques du « Krimi » (film policier allemand des années 50/60 souvent basé sur les oeuvres d'Edgar Wallace) avec comme souvent une touche « british » bienvenue (co-production anglo-allemande oblige). L'intrigue est pleine de rebondissements évidemment un peu prévisibles (on est quand même dans de la série « b ») mais les acteurs (anglais et allemands) sont convaincants. On a même le plaisir de retrouver quelques noms qui raviront les amateurs (Leo Genn, Heinz Drache qui joua dans « Fu Manchu », et l'immense Christopher Lee, transfuge momentané de la Hammer ). Le film est en couleurs, en scope et le DVD de bonne tenue malgré quelques petits défauts. Dans la catégorie « cinéma de quartier », une réussite. Attention, pour les non anglophones, il n'y a pas de sous-titres mais ce film n'est disponible dans aucune édition en français.
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Par Bookinator le 29 décembre 2013
Format: DVD Achat vérifié
Je n'ai pas été fasciné par ce film que j'ai surtout acheté pour Christopher Lee dont je suis un grand fan, je m'attendais à un film d'horreur, mais je me suis retrouvé avec un thriller, d'ou une certaine déception...
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 3.0 étoiles sur 5 10 commentaires
16 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Barbarini's Circus, come for the fun, stay for the...MURDER! 20 avril 2004
Par cookieman108 - Publié sur
Format: DVD
Circus of Fear (1966), aka Circus of Terror (1966), aka Psycho Circus (1967), as it was known in the United States, is based on a novel by prolific writer Edgar Wallace, who, among other works, also wrote the novel that became the basis for the film King Kong (1933). Circus of Fear, directed by John Moxley, probably most remembered for his work on television, The Avengers, The Saint, Mission Impossible, Mannix, Hawaii Five-O, The Night Stalker, any much more, was also responsible for the film Horror Hotel (1960).

The film takes place in England, and starts out with the robbery of an armored car. Things are going smoothly, until one of the guards sees an opportunity to escape, and gets shot by the other guard. inside job. Anyway, the men make a unique escape, and meet up later in a hidden location. A call to the anonymous mastermind of the heist, who none of the actual robbers have ever met, provides specific instructions with regards to the inside man and the rest of the gang. The inside man is told to take the money to a remote location, and the others leave, with the idea that they will get their shares later, but soon get caught by the police through an anonymous tip, as the inside man reaches the rendezvous, near the winter quarters of a local circus, only to meet with an untimely end. The money is taken, and the mystery begins to unfold. As the police continue their investigation, bank notes begin appearing in the area of the circus' winter quarters, and Inspector Elliot (Leo Gurn) suspects the person or persons involved in the theft may be hiding out at the circus. We soon meet various performers of the circus, which sets up a whole load of red herrings, as the performers are presented as a volatile lot, prone to acting like overgrown children. Among the performers is Gregor (Christopher Lee), the lion tamer who always wears a mask to conceal his horrible disfigurement due to a supposed accident involving a rambunctious kitty. The inside man's body is discovered on the grounds of the circus, and a performer is also kakked shortly thereafter, reinforcing Inspector Elliot's suspicions with regards to the killer and his/her connection to the circus. More and more clues (most useless) are thrown our way as histories are revealed, and the plot gets fairly convoluted. Klaus Kinski is listed as an actor in the film, but his role is limited as an original heist man who followed the money to the circus. I would say he has about five minutes of total screen time, and absolutely no development for his character is presented, making his role essentially useless. So who is the mastermind? Who is responsible for murdering various individuals throughout the film? What secret does Gregor hide behind his mask?

As others have stated, this would appear to be a horror movie on first glance, but it isn't. It's really a somewhat bloated mystery/drama, presenting, rather clumsily, a number of suspects. The way motives were thrown around so obviously will make you groan, and when you finally do discover the identity of the mastermind behind the crimes and his reasoning, you may be disappointed. There was little, if anything, that would have drawn the viewer to pick that individual as the criminal, other than that's how is was written in the script. I do like Christopher Lee a lot, but his role here seems to be more of the producers using the star power of his name more than anything else to sell the movie. Leo Genn provides a great performance as the harassed by his supervisor inspector, more or less riding out the plot threads until they produce the culprit. He does piece together the puzzle near the end, but given the information we had offered by the film, I am still unsure how he came to the conclusions he did, making the whole `mystery' element a little awkward and clunky. The film started out strong, but ended with a bit of a sputter for me. And I have to say, I kinda felt sorry for the animals shown, the lions and elephants, as they all looked rather tired and sickly, as is often the case of circuses and zoos, despite even the most well-meaning efforts to care for the animals.

Blue Underground provides a really nice looking wide screen print here, along with a number of special features, including a commentary track by director John Moxley, American and U.K. trailers for the film, poster, press book and still galleries for the film, and very detailed talent bios of actors Christopher Lee and Klaus Kinski. The film here runs 91 minutes, compared to a meager 65 minutes on a previous VHS copy I saw, suggesting that maybe this is a truly restored version. In the end, I would say this is a three star release of a two star film. By the way, I really loved the tagline for this film, `The most horrifying syndicate of evil in history!' A syndicate, to me, at least, implies more than just one person...but okay, let's go along...'The most history'? Oh about `selling it'.

15 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 PRETTY GOOD MYSTERY THRILLER..... 1 octobre 2003
Par Mark Norvell - Publié sur
Format: DVD
I was hugely disappointed that this wasn't at all what I hoped it was...that being a Euro-shocker along the lines of "Circus of Horrors". What I found instead is an OK mystery based on a novel by Edgar Wallace that's fairly engrossing with some neat surprises. After an admittedly good opening about an armored car heist, the story shifts to Barbarini's Circus which has an atmosphere rife with tension: assumed identities, jealous romance, a dangerous lioness named Sheba, her hooded tamer Gregor (Christopher Lee), a shifty knife thrower and a blackmailing dwarf named Mr.Big (Skip Martin). The stolen money lands in the circus and an escaped member of the heist is murdered by...a knife thrower. Scotland Yard is soon on the circus grounds and there are red herrings galore. The heist member's body is found and Mario the knife thrower's beautiful assistant Gina (luscious Margaret Lee), who knows something, is also killed by...a knife thrower. The killer is never revealed until the end. To be honest, despite my initial disappointment, this is a colorful, beautifully photographed, well acted (if a tad overplotted) diversion that should please hardcore mystery fans. The music score is moody Euro-jazz flavored and blares at key moments which I found kind've fun. It's not a horror film at all. Instead, it's laced with bizarre atmosphere and genuine intrigue that kept me guessing right up to the end. I did not guess the killer's identity. Good supporting cast with Suzy Kendall as Gregor's "niece", Anthony Newlands as Barbarini, Klaus Kinski as a mystery drifter connected to the heist, Leo Genn as the ringmaster-cum-hero and especially Skip Martin as the nasty Mr.Big. The DVD from Blue Underground is superb in quality. I don't know why this was cut so severely when making the rounds as "Psycho-Circus". There's no gore or nudity. Just solid, well made storytelling. The action shifts between Scotland Yard and the circus and is rather tame...yet it sustains your interest. I have to recommend it as a pretty good mystery for fans of the genre and for fans of good British thrillers. But, keep in mind that "Circus of Fear" is NOT a horror film. I hope it doesn't disappoint too many people because it IS rather good and deserves to be seen and appreciated for what it really is...a really decent mystery-thriller.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Dracula Meets Mr. Big. 20 novembre 2003
Par Robert S. Clay Jr. - Publié sur
Format: DVD
Christopher Lee must have been very busy back in the '60s. He was taking every movie role in sight. Perhaps that explains why one of Hammer's major stars surfaced in this minor thriller. To set the record straight, despite an attempt to package this flick as a horror film, it's really a crime melodrama that begins well but falters along the way. A diabolic super criminal takes refuge with a British circus after masterminding an armored car robbery. It gets better. Lee plays the hooded lion-tamer/knife thrower that leads the suspect list. If we follow the logic, the filmmaker wanted a popular actor such as Lee just so he could hide his face behind a hood for much of the film. Go figure. The diminutive Skip Martin is great as Mr. Big, the small chap with a big attitude. Distinguished actor Leo Genn must have been amused by his role as a police detective. He keeps looking bemused and fatuous even after being chewed out by his boss. The cadaverous Klaus Kinski is around just long enough to suffer a stabbing pain. There is also the usual bevy of circus girls in their revealing costumes. As all circus pictures, the film uses screen time of real circus performers doing their acts. For American viewers, the European backgrounds may add a certain charm. The flick takes itself too seriously to be enjoyed as camp. As a straightforward thriller, it's harmless fun. Depending on which edition you consider, remember that a budget priced DVD is better than a cheap VHS tape, but just barely. Beware chopped up edited editions! ;-)
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 An Edgar Wallace Crime Thriller Not A Horror Film. 30 décembre 2013
Par Chip Kaufmann - Publié sur
Format: DVD
During the 1960s there was an entire subgenre of films, most of them German, based on the works of prolific English author Edgar Wallace (1877-1933) who is best known in America for having written the original draft script of KING KONG. He was immensely popular during his lifetime but his reputation rapidly declined after his death. Why he should suddenly become popular again 30 years later, and in Germany of all places, is anybody's guess. Over the course of 13 years (1959-1972) there were 32 German films based on Wallace's books known as "krimis" or crime stories but a few were made elsewhere including 3 in England by producer Harry Alan Towers of which CIRCUS OF FEAR (1966) was the last. Thanks to it's retitling as PSYCHO-CIRCUS with most of the caper elements removed and Christopher Lee's name on the marquee, the movie was marketed as a horror movie which it definitely is not. People who rent or buy the film with that in mind are justifiably annoyed when they find that out but CIRCUS is actually a decent crime/mystery film when seen here in it's original uncut version (91 min -vs- 67 min) and in color.

The film opens with a well executed robbery on Tower Bridge where half-a-million pounds are stolen. Unfortunately one of the payroll guards is killed and the thieves are forced to split up. An anonymous tip leads to the capture of most of the gang. The one with the money is killed near a circus. When a member of the troop (Lee) accidentally finds the money, he hides it. Cut to the circus where we meet squabbling performers, see a few circus acts, and witness a couple of knife murders. Is it the knife thrower? the lion tamer?, or perhaps a blackmailing dwarf? It's up to the ringmaster (Heinz Drache) and a Scotland Yard inspector (Leo Genn) to find out. Perrenial nutcase Klaus Kinski is there, along with Drache, for the German audience where this film was well received. It's much closer in spirit and style to Joan Crawford's BERSERK (1967) than to CIRCUS OF HORRORS (1960). However if you're a fan of crime fiction, enjoy caper films, and aren't overly picky, then CIRCUS OF FEAR is an engaging enough way to kill an hour and a half. Just don't expect great filmmaking even if it was made by the man who gave us HORROR HOTEL.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 The only horror is the quality of the DVD transfer; still, we get Christopher Lee, Leo Genn and Cecil Parker 28 juin 2009
Par C. O. DeRiemer - Publié sur
Format: DVD
With a title like Circus of Fear and a star named Christopher Lee, I think it's fair to assume that the movie probably features psychopathic clowns, murderous midgets, a trapeze made of razor wire and a safety net filled with broken glass. Wrong. The film is about a heist...and about the unleashed passions within a community of circus performers...and about family revenge...and about the sins of the past...and about...well, you see the problem. The movie goes after a lot of plot lines, and horror isn't one of them.

After an armored car is held up on London's Tower Bridge and one of the guards killed, the gang is captured but the money disappears. The only place it could have wound up is somewhere in the Barberini Worldwide Circus at its winter quarters. We know there was a Mr. Big behind the heist, but then we find out there might be two Mr. Bigs, the second being the circus midget who dabbles in blackmail. There's the Great Gregor, the lion trainer (Christopher Lee), who always wears a mask, ostensibly to cover gruesome scars when he was attacked by one of his big cats. There's his niece, or is it his daughter? Is he a murderer, or just guilty of manslaughter? Did he escape from prison, or is he just presumed dead? There is a fierce knife thrower and his sluttish target and fiancee. There's the vengeful ringmaster, the innocent equestrienne, the bookkeeper who wants to be a clown, and that midget who is always listening in to conversations. There's Barberini himself, with fat lips, a cane, a cigar and a fur-trimmed coat. And somewhere in the circus is a quarter-of-a-million British pounds in bank-notes. Murder brings Inspector Elliot (Leo Genn) to the circus, and more murders keep him there until the killer is betrayed by special throwing knives from his past. And that was not a spoiler.

The movie, if it had a decent transfer and with the right (low) price might be a reasonable way to waste an hour and a half. However, the DVD transfer in every public domain version I've heard of is execrable. Only scenes in broad daylight or in well-lit rooms are easily decipherable. At night, when it's foggy or just overcast, you can see almost nothing except chrome bumpers and flashlight beams. The movie was shot in color; it looks in black and white because the color has so badly faded.

The movie, however, does feature an odd collection of proven, well-known actors. Christopher Lee (and now Sir Christopher) was not just a horror specialist; he was an accomplished actor. I'm not sure how he could have wound up in this film. Leo Genn was an established star by the late Forties and early Fifties who gradually faded into movies like this. He had a great speaking voice as well that well-bred British manner that so easily moves from courtesy to careless condescension. Cecil Parker shows up now and then as Genn's harried boss. Parker had a distinctive voice, a long career, and was at his best in sophisticated comedies. Even a young Klaus Kinski is here, playing a deeply-troubled gang member you'd have problems being friendly with.

This is a movie to watch with average to low expectations; then you won't be disappointed.
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