In 2013 and 2014, Shout Factory released the first two volumes of the Vincent Price Collection. Both featured high-definition restored versions of some of Price’s finest work on Blu Ray. There were quite a few films from his teaming up with Roger Corman in the 1960’s as part of his “Poe Cycle”, such as The Masque of the Red Death, The Raven, The Fall of the House of Usher, and The Pit and the Pendulum. There were also others thrown in to make this an eclectic mix, such as A Comedy of Terrors, House on Haunted Hill, and The Abominable Dr. Phibes (and its sequel). Both sets featured six and seven films respectively. I had been in the dark about whether there would be a third installment, and just yesterday, I read there would be. Of course, what is included all boils down to which rights can be acquired by the distributor, and for what cost, but what we will be presented with this coming February 2016 is rather unimpressive.
Unless this is just something to hold us over until a grand fourth set comes our way, fans will no doubt be disappointed. To be included in this next one are: Master of the World, Tower of London, Diary of a Madman, Cry of the Banshee, and An Evening of Edgar Allan Poe. I have seen nearly 30 Price films. He is one of my favorite actors. Yet, even I am scratching my head at this choice of titles. Tower of London was pretty good, though most critics tend to just ignore it. An Evening of Edgar Allan Poe is an exhilarating one-man-show of Price performing four Poe tales on stage, but it is only 45 minutes. This 1970 television special should have surely been just included as a supplement or special feature, not one of the main attractions simply because of its length. The others I have yet to see, so I will probably be purchasing this one just like the other two, but the price (no pun intended) better be much lower. I, for one, will not be paying the $62.97 it is currently being advertised at. Not for this lot, which is really only four movies when it all boils down.
Master of the World is an all but forgotten science fiction flick about an unhinged scientist who creates an airship meant to fly around the world and patrol it to keep peace, but takes a dark turn and instead produces violence. As for the other two, I don’t think they are on anyone’s Top Ten list. IMDB pages do not even bear a poster for one of them. This really has to make you wonder what Shout Factory was thinking because they usually do a great job. Where is Theater of Blood? It was Price’s own personal favorite and one of his greatest performance ever. You can even throw in The Tingler, a film I am not crazy about but when paired with House on Haunted Hill, helped to ignite his horror career. What about House of Wax, Madhouse, Scream and Scream Again, The Oblong Box, and Tales of Terror? I think that is what people want to see, and will expect it if there ever is a fourth edition coming out in future years.