Book Review: The Dr. Phibes Companion

Dr Phibes CompanionThe Dr. Phibes Companion
Published by BearManor Media, 2018. 274 pages
By Justin Humphreys

One of the first movies I rented when I bought my very own VCR was one of my all time favorite films, The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971), starring the amazing Vincent Price, and it still remains the same to this day. How could you not love this movie about this evil genius who sets out to get revenge of those who he believes caused the death of his wife, each one in a very creative way? It’s one of my favorite character’s that Price brought to life and is always a treat to watch. So when I first read about the news that there was going to a book dedicated to the Phibes films, I was more than a little excited.

With contributions by Mark Ferelli, Sam Irvin, and David Taylor, and a forward by Phibes co-screenwriter William Goldstein, author Humphreys has compiled so much information about the first Phibes movie, its sequel Dr. Phibes Rises Again (1972), as well as the many proposed sequels that never got off the ground. Humphreys has done an amazing job compiling information about these titles from the original screenplays, letting us know the differences between them and the final product, finding and hiring the director, the art direction, casting, makeup, the score, and just about everything you could want to know about them! As a Phibes Phan, you’ll learn more here than you thought you could.

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New Book on Dr. Phibes!

Dr. Phibes CompanionWhen I first really got into horror films, one of my favorites was The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971), starring the wonderful campy Vincent Price. Even though he was the villain, you always rooted for him! And even though he never actually “talked” in the film, he still commanded your attention each and every frame he was on screen. With a beautiful mixture of horror and humor, director Robert Fuest and Price created a highly memorable character that we got to experience in not only the first film, but its sequel, Dr. Phibes Rises Again (1972).

Last year, one of my favorite books that I read was Interviews Too Shocking To Print by Justin Humphreys. So when I discovered that he was coming out with a Dr. Phibes companion book, I was just ecstatic. BearManor Media has announced that The Dr. Phibes Companion is now available for pre-order, both in hard and soft cover editions ($32 & $22), though they don’t have a publication date on the site just yet.

Humphreys had previously written about the first Phibes movie in “The Kind of Fiend Who Wins” and now takes that and expands on it, giving us the definitive history of our favorite devious doctor, as well as a new essay on the sequel, Dr. Phibes Rises Again. There is also a new forward by William Goldstein, one of the creators of this wonderful character. Adding in interviews with many of the people involved with the films, such as director Fuest, screenwriters Goldstein and James Whiton, art director Brian Eatwell, sound designer Peter Lennard, organist Nicholas Kynaston, composer John Gale, and many others. The book will also include never-before-seen production artwork by Fuest from his personal shooting script, as well as photos that have never been published. And one part that I’m really interested in reading, the thorough history of the sequels that never came to be.

I know this will definitely be added to my library once it comes out and can’t wait to dive into it. For more information, just head over to BearManor Media’s website HERE.

2017 Year in Review Part 3: BOOKS!

gromit-reading

With as many titles that I add to my library each and every year, if I don’t force myself some rules, I’ll never get through some of these. Back in 2015, I’ve set myself a goal to get through at least one book per month. That year I almost made it, getting through eleven. Then last year, I devoured fourteen titles! Then this year I did even one better and made it to fifteen titles. Trust me, I wish I had the time to double that number since when you have over a thousand titles in your library, and are constantly adding new ones, it is a never ending quest. But one I that I just love. Just like my Best Of movie lists, these are not titles that came out this last year, but ones that I finally got around to. Out of those fifteen, here are the top five that I would recommend the most:

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Book Review: Interviews Too Shocking to Print!

interviewstooshockingInterviews Too Shocking to Print!
Published by BearManor Media, 2014. 332 pages.
By Justin Humphreys

Right off the bat, let me say that if you’re expecting a but of unedited and sorid tales of Hollywood that couldn’t be printed before, you will be disappointed. The title of the book refers to the old fashion ballyhoo that B-movies used to use in hopes to draw a crowd. That being said, I think this book should draw the crowd because it is simply a must read for anybody interested in the horror and sci-fi genre and the people behind them.

I have quite a few “interview” books in my library and at least half of them cover the usual suspects in the movie industry. Not saying that is a bad thing, but we tend to read the same stories, as well as the people being covered are ones that we are usually very familiar with. But what Humphreys does with this book is put the spotlight on more than a few names that have made huge strides in the industry, but are names that you don’t typically hear being brought up, which is a damn shame. Thankfully, with this book, hopefully that can change.

Humphreys started interviewing some of these talents at the early age of 15 years of age, so right away it shows his diehard passion for these kind of films. Throughout his career, he befriended a lot of these people in the industry and is now trying to give them the credit they most assuredly deserves. And even if quite a few of them that are covered here have already passed away, learning about them and their work is the best way to keep them alive. And Humphreys has done a wonderful job doing just that.

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