Black Sabbath

( 1 )

Overview

This anthology features three chilling horror stories. "Il Telefono" is credited to Guy de Maupassant, although he never wrote such a story, and concerns a woman Michele Mercier receiving telephone calls from beyond the grave. "Wurdulak," by Alexei Tolstoi, stars Boris Karloff as an aging vampire who can only feed on those he loves. Co-starring Mark Damon and Susy Andersen, it is clearly the best story of the three. The final tale, "La Goccia d'Acqua," is falsely credited to Anton Chekhov. It features Jacqueline ...
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Overview

This anthology features three chilling horror stories. "Il Telefono" is credited to Guy de Maupassant, although he never wrote such a story, and concerns a woman Michele Mercier receiving telephone calls from beyond the grave. "Wurdulak," by Alexei Tolstoi, stars Boris Karloff as an aging vampire who can only feed on those he loves. Co-starring Mark Damon and Susy Andersen, it is clearly the best story of the three. The final tale, "La Goccia d'Acqua," is falsely credited to Anton Chekhov. It features Jacqueline Pierreux stealing a ring from a corpse she is preparing for burial, only to be murdered by the old woman's ghost. The American version differs in four major areas: the print is shorter, the stories appear in a different order, there is a linking device with Karloff speaking directly to the audience from a foggy void, and Roberto Nicolosi's musical score is replaced with one by lounge-icon Les Baxter. The American release of the film is also missing a comic coda featuring Karloff riding on horseback or is he?; this appears in most Eurpoean prints of the film, including Mario Bava's original cut.
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Special Features

Original trailers of other Bava films
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
An atmospheric, visually arresting horror film directed by the legendary Mario Bava, Black Sabbath consists of three blood-chilling stories introduced by master of ceremonies Boris Karloff. The first two are psychological thrillers with shocking finales; the third and best tale features Karloff himself as a Wurdalak Russian vampire who systematically infects his entire family before turning his attentions to hero Mark Damon and his daughter, Susy Andersen. Bava, a classically trained artist and former cinematographer who's visual and technical virtuosity inspired a whole generation of European horror and fantasy filmmakers including his son Lamberto and the great Dario Argento, doesn't have that much to work with here -- none of the three narratives are particularly original. Still, bolstered by Bava's meticulous direction -- the scene compositions, the studied lighting effects, and fluid camera movements -- and Karloff's predictably capable performance, Black Sabbath rises from routine horror flick to collectable classic.
All Movie Guide
This trilogy of horror stories from Mario Bava serves as an interesting look at a trio of varying filmmaking styles that later became signatures of the director's work. The first tale, "The Telephone, was one of Bava's first attempts at a giallo film, which he made famous a year later with his masterwork Blood and Black Lace. The red telephones that always seem to play supporting props in Bava's other gialli are here given top billing as star Michele Mercier is threatened by a caller who claims to be her psycho ex-lover. A lesbian subtext provides some interesting moments and Bava builds the tension up well, but "Telephone" is only an average tale that follows through to a predictable twist. "I Wurdulak" is by far the best of the three and features one of the last great performances by Boris Karloff. This story takes the vampire legend to another level -- in which those afflicted by the creature's bite return to attack the ones they love. Karloff, who also appears in an introduction segment at the opening of the film, is wonderfully evil as the family head whose ghostly visage provides several unforgettable scares. Bava's wonderful camera work recalls his 1961 hit Black Sunday, and capitalizes on beautifully designed sets that lend a lot to the atmosphere. "The Drop of Water" is another good shocker about a nurse who steals the ring off an old occultist woman's hand only to have her grinning corpse torment her from beyond the grave. The initial shock of seeing the old witch is truly bone-chilling and though the tale is a short one, it remains scary and suspenseful throughout. Jacqueline Pierreux turns in a great performance as the salty nurse. The U.S. version of Black Sabbath depicted the segments in a different order.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/16/2013
  • UPC: 738329099725
  • Original Release: 1963
  • Rating:

  • Source: Kino Video
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Remastered
  • Time: 1:32:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 2,605

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Boris Karloff Gorca
Michele Mercier Rosy
Lydia Alfonsi Mary [The Telephone]
Mark Damon Vladimir d'Urfe
Jacqueline Pierreux Helen Corey
Susy Andersen Sdenka [The Wurdalak]
Rika Dialina Wife
Milli Monti Maid
Glauco Onorato Giorgio
Massimo Righi Pietro
Technical Credits
Mario Bava Director, Cinematographer, Screenwriter
Salvatore Billitteri Director, Producer
Les Baxter Score Composer
Alberto Bevilacqua Screenwriter
Ivan Chekhov Original Story
Riccardo Domenici Set Decoration/Design
Otello Fava Makeup
Marcello Fondato Screenwriter
Giorgio Giovannini Art Director
Trini Grani Costumes/Costume Designer
Paolo Mercuri Producer
Roberto Nicolosi Score Composer
Kay Rose Sound Editor
Mario Serandrei Editor
F.G. Snyder Original Story
Ubaldo Terzano Cinematographer
Alexei N. Tolstoy Original Story
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Black Sabbath
1. Chapter 1 [:10]
1. "The Telephone" [7:47]
2. Hiding Valuables [9:05]
3. Visitor [10:06]
4. "The Wurdulak: [9:56]
5. Midnight [11:11]
6. The Child Is Gone [11:26]
7. No Escape [8:44]
8. "The Drop Of Water" [4:43]
9. The Ring [6:30]
10. Haunted [12:34]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Black Sabbath
   Play Film
   Chapters
   Trailers
      Black Sunday
      Hatchet For The Honeymoon
      Baron Blood
      Lisa And The Devil
      The House Of Exorcism
   Subtitles
      English Subtitles: On/Off
         English Subtitles: On
         English Subtitles: Off
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    A Boris Karloff gem.

    If you're a fan of the legendary actor and italian B-movies then this one's for you! Reminds me of the American International films of the 1960s which I adore. Its a trilogy of eerie tales that will either have you scared or chuckling from some of the effects. Good addition to any collection.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews