Circus of Horrors (1960)

Article #625 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 11/30/2002
Posting date: 4/25/2003

A plastic surgeon on the run from the law uses a circus as a front to continue his research.

Having endured at least one similarly themed movie in the past (BERSERK), I didn’t really expect a lot from this one. I was pleasantly surprised; what a world of difference a good script can make in this type of movie. The characters have a lot more dimension than I usually expect from a movie like this, and there are unexpected touches that are, if not totally necessary, at least indicative of a certain complexity in the conception of the story (my favorite: a poignant moment involving a clown after one of the murders). The movie feels a little like a cross between Hammer and Italian horror; it’s British origin and its blood recall the former, and the sadism of the story recalls the latter. I enjoyed this much more than I expected, though a few of the special effects aren’t quite up to par.

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