Five strangers on a train, and Peter Cushing.
Five men board a train. All strangers to one another. All going to different places. A fortuneteller named Dr. Schreck AKA Dr. Terror (Peter Cushing) gets on with a deck of tarot cards. He offers to tell each one their fortune. One by one the men eventually agree. Dr. Terror tells them their fortune.
1. Werewolf: Jim Dawson (Neil McCallum) is an architect. At one time his family owned a home on the Scottish Isles. The new owner asks him to do some renovations for her. During the renovations he finds a coffin containing the original owner of the house, Count Cosmo Valdemar. Valdemar is a werewolf and has begun killing people. Dawson believes that the new owner Deirdre Biddulph is in danger. His plan is to make some silver bullets from his ancestral cross and confront Valdemar. All does not go as planned.
2. Creeping Vine: Bill Rogers (Alan Freeman) and his family return from vacation to find an unusual vine growing profusely in their garden. When he tries to cut it down the vine takes offence. The plant is intelligent. And violent. And homicidal.
3. Voodoo: Biff Bailey Wally (Roy Castle) is a musician. In the West Indies he spies on a secret voodoo ceremony and writes down the sacred music. He then steals the tune. Back in London he performs the music at an event. He unknowingly releases an evil voodoo god who is not happy that his music has been stolen.
4. Disembodied Hand: Franklyn Marsh (Christopher Lee) is an art critic and a pompous ass. Eric Landor (Michael Gough) is a painter. When Marsh goes overboard criticizing Landor’s work, Landor gets even by humiliating the art critic. Landor pushes it too far and in anger Marsh runs over Landor crushing one of his hands. The hand is amputated and Landor can no longer paint. Devastated he commits suicide. Landor’s disembodied hand, however, begins to stalk Marsh.
5. The Vampire: Dr. Bob Carroll (Donald Sutherland) has married the girl of his dreams. She is a French girl named Nicole (Jennifer Jayne). Unfortunately she is a vampire. His colleague Dr. Blake (Max Adrian) has just the cure.
“Dr. Terror’s House of Horror” was released in 1965 and was directed by Freddie Francis. Released by Amicus Films, it is an anthology or omnibus of five stories. Sometimes called portmanteau filmmaking. That’s where separate stories have one underlying theme that ties them together. In this case, guys on a train. Amicus made many anthology films.
The stories themselves, for the most part, are quite good. Lots of interesting twists and turns. Even the main story has its own twist to it. There are 5 stories which are more than usual. There are quite a few good actors. If you love anthologies there’s something here for everyone.
Roy Castle from the “Voodoo” story was an accomplished Jazz trumpet player as well as being able to play other instruments.