Phantom of the Opera

The Phantom of the Opera

Director: Terence Fisher, Herbert Lom, Heather Sears, Thorley Walters

Cast: Terence Fisher, Herbert Lom, Heather Sears, Thorley Walters

     
 
This Gothic melodrama from Hammer Studios is in color, but the plot is basically the same as the two previous efforts. Instead of Paris, the action takes place at the Royal Opera House in London. The Phantom (Herbert Lom) is a facially disfigured musician/composer who had his opera stolen by a conniving composer, the lecherous Lord d'Arcy. The Phantom -- who lives in

Overview

This Gothic melodrama from Hammer Studios is in color, but the plot is basically the same as the two previous efforts. Instead of Paris, the action takes place at the Royal Opera House in London. The Phantom (Herbert Lom) is a facially disfigured musician/composer who had his opera stolen by a conniving composer, the lecherous Lord d'Arcy. The Phantom -- who lives in the sewer beneath the opera house -- has his dwarf assistant (Ian Wilson) kidnap Christine Charles (Heather Sears), the lead actress in Gough's production, with whom he has fallen in love, and trains her to become an opera singer, performing a work he has written. Meanwhile, Christine's fiance, Harry Hunter (Edward de Souza, researches the phantom's history and, after locating his whereabouts and finding him, decides to unmask the mysterious fellow.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
This Hammer-produced take on this iconic horror antihero was not a hit during its original release but time has been kind to it. The script takes liberties with the plot of Gaston Leroux's novel but the changes work: the addition of a strong villain and the retooling of the Phantom's backstory give the film its own, uniquely tragic tone, as does the emphasis on dramatic elements over horrific ones. Terence Fisher's direction is stylish, fully delivering the lush atmosphere expected from a Hammer film, but he also shows a confident touch with his actors, getting strong performances that drive the material as much as his visual flourishes. In terms of performances, Heather Sears offers a winning, sympathetic performance as the heroine and Edward De Souza makes for a charming, heroic love interest. However, the film truly belongs to Michael Gough and Herbert Lom: Gough is delightfully wicked as the music mogul whose sleazy machinations drive the plot and Lom is frightening and sympathetic by turns as the title character, a decent man driven to tragic extremes by the cruelty of Gough's character. On the critical side, Phantom Of The Opera does have some flaws: the tone shifts from scares to drama can be a bit abrupt at times and the rather rushed finale leaves a few plot threads dangling in a frustrating manner. That said, Hammer's Phantom Of The Opera is a solid addition to the screen treatments of this character and recommended to fans of the studio.

Product Details

Release Date:
09/02/2014
UPC:
0025192116018
Original Release:
1962
Source:
Universal Mod
Presentation:
[Colorized]
Time:
1:25:00
Sales rank:
14,183

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Herbert Lom The Phantom (Professor Petrie)
Heather Sears Christine Charles
Thorley Walters Lattimer
Michael Gough Lord Ambrose d'Arcy
Edward de Souza Harry Hunter
Martin Miller Rossi
Miles Malleson Philosophical Cabby
Miriam Karlin Charwoman
John Harvey Vickers
Ian Wilson Dwarf
Marne Maitland Xavier
Sonya Cordeau Yvonne
Renee Houston Mrs. Tucker
Liam Redmond Actor
Michael Ripper Longfaced Cabby
Patrick Troughton Rat Catcher
Harold Goodwin Bill

Technical Credits
Terence Fisher Director
Roy Ashton Makeup
Edwin T. Astley Score Composer
Alfred Cox Editor
John Elder Screenwriter
Arthur Grant Cinematographer
Anthony Hinds Producer,Screenwriter
Don Mingaye Art Director
James Needs Editor
Bernard Robinson Production Designer

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