Spirits of the Dead (1969) - Rotten Tomatoes

Spirits of the Dead (1969)

TOMATOMETER

——

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

This film features adaptations of three short stories by Edgar Allan Poe. In "Metzengerstein," a woman believes a horse possesses her dead cousin's spirit; "William Wilson" focuses on an Army officer who murders his double; and "Never Bet The Devil Your Head" tells a tale of a jaded movie star.

Cast

Jane Fonda
as Contessa Frederique de Metzengerstein
Peter Fonda
as Baron Wilhelm Berlifitzing
Brigitte Bardot
as Giuseppina
Alain Delon
as William Wilson and his double
James Robertson Justice
as Countess' Advisor
Anny Duperey
as 1st Guest
Georges Douking
as du Lissier
Katia Christine
as Young Girl
Daniele Vargas
as Professor
Terence Stamp
as Toby Dammit
Fabrizio Angeli
as 1st Director
Ernesto Colli
as 2nd Director
Anne Tonietti
as Television Commentator
Vincent Price
as Narrator
Alcardo Ward
as 1st Interviewer
Paul Cooper
as 2nd Interviewer
Marco Stefanelli
as Wilson as a child
Antonia Pietrosi
as Actress (segment "Toby Dammit")
Rick Boyd
as [Never Bet The Devil Your Head]
Jérôme Polidor
as [Never Bet The Devil Your Head]
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Spirits of the Dead

All Critics (20) | Top Critics (3)

Only Fellini (Toby Dammit) really manages to make much of his source.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

[Toby Dammit] is marvelous: a short movie but a major one. The Vadim is as overdecorated and shrill as a drag ball, but still quite fun, and the Malle, based on one of Poe's best stories, is simply tedious.

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

It offers pleasures above and beyond its status as a relic of a groovier and exponentially more swinging era.

Full Review… | March 19, 2003
AV Club
Top Critic

Out of the three episodes based on the macabre tales by Edgar Allan Poe, the third -- the only modern-day one, directed by Federico Fellini -- is far and away the best.

Full Review… | October 18, 2016
Radio Times

Definitely worth a look for fans of the involved directors, though such fans probably already own it.

Full Review… | July 6, 2010
eFilmCritic.com

Three devout libertines have a go at Poe, fear and trembling invade their debauchery voluptuously

Full Review… | January 27, 2010
CinePassion

Audience Reviews for Spirits of the Dead

½

This movie features three stories directed by three great foreign directors, and the cast features some of the best foreign actors at the time too. I really liked the stories and seeing all the different directing styles is so cool. I highly recommend this movie.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer

½

Poe's macabre tales are re-envisioned by three auteurs: Vadim, Malle, and Fellini. Vadim's 'Metzemgerstein' is reinterpreted in the form of a debauched, depraved, decadent countess -- Jane Fonda. Her nature is aptly described as a 'petty Caligula.' Orgies, bisexuality, and hedonism abound. Her costumes were late 60's outrageousness. Falling in love with her cousin, played by her brother, Peter, just added to the creepiness factor. Eventually, she and her spirited black stallion are literally consumed by flames. Malle's vision of 'William Wilson' was my personal favorite. Alain Delon is perfectly cast as a sadist, haunted by his conscience, which is manifested as his doppelganger. Malle's jumpy camera perfectly translates the terror and anxiety experienced by Delon after murdering his doppelganger. By eliminating his superego, he has essentially murdered himself. Fellini's loose adaptation of Poe's story is replete with surrealistic trademarks. This heightens the absurdity of the story. Terrence Stamp is well cast as an amoralist, tormented actor. His joyride to hell is the most shocking scene in the trilogy. The combination of the tales is quite moralistic: the devil will always get his due.

Stefanie C
Stefanie C

Super Reviewer

½

the 3rd segment by Fellini, "Toby Dammit", is amazingly kinetic, and Malle's has some disturbing touches

Adam Mahler
Adam Mahler

Super Reviewer

Spirits of the Dead Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Discussion Forum

Discuss Spirits of the Dead on our Movie forum!

News & Features