Vincent Price: The Master of the Thriller

by | June 29, 2009 at 1:55 PM | The Movies

You remember that spooky, sinister voice in the middle of Michael Jackson’s groundbreaking, legendary video for “Thriller,” of course. “Darkness falls across the land. The midnight hour is close at hand. Creatures crawl in search of blood to terrorize y’all’s neighborhood. And whomsoever shall be found without the soul for getting down must stand and face the hounds of hell and rot inside a corpse’s shell. The foulest stench is in the air, the funk of forty thousand years, and grizzly ghouls from every tomb are closing in to seal your doom. And though you fight to stay alive, your body starts to shiver, for no mere mortal can resist the evil of the thriller.”

It’s an unforgettable voice, especially when followed by that echoing evil cackle that ends the song. The man behind that voice was Vincent Price, and there’s a big reason that MJ asked him to contribute to his ode to creepy old scare flicks. That’s because Price was a master of thrillers, so much so that he became synonymous with them – and according to Quincy Jones, Price nailed his “Thriller” speech in two takes. You can witness his unique talent firsthand by watching one of the many, many Vincent Price movies available to watch in full for free right here on Fancast. Check out this copious list!


The Haunted Palace
The legendary creepshow veteran finds himself ever-increasingly possessed by the spirit of his warlock grandfather, who intends to make unholy sacrifices in order to rule the world.


The Conqueror Worm
Price stars as a nefarious and corrupt Witchfinder General who hunts down and brutalizes those poor souls suspected of witchcraft in this Edgar Allen Poe story – one of the most violent films of its time.


Cry of the Banshee
Price is a sadistic 16th-Century Irish judge who disrupts a coven of Druid witches, only to find himself and his entire family line cursed by the spirit of the “sidhe” taking the form of a mild-mannered stable boy who wreaks violent vengeance.


Twice Told Tales
Renowned author Nathaniel Hawthorne’s trio of horror tales – Dr. Heidegger’s Experiment, Rappaccini’s Daughter and The House of the Seven Gables – are given life with the help of Vincent Price.


The Comedy of Terrors
This time he’s playing an undertaker who, with the help of his cringing assistant Peter Lorre, is trying to poison his senile father-in-law (Boris Karloff) to take over his business, while he’s also boosting his ledger by quietly smothering wealthy old men in their sleep – that is, until his latest victim (Basil Rathbone) refuses to stay dead!


Theatre of Blood
Price is an actor who takes revenge on his critics that denied him recognition by re-enacting death scenes from famous Shakespeare plays.


The Oblong Box
In another Poe story, Price stars as an English nobleman whose brother was horribly disfigured and kept locked up and out of sight – until he escapes and goes on a rampage to take revenge on a society that made him an outcast.


The Last Man on Earth
Price is the last remaining human trying to survive in a global epidemic that turned the rest of humanity into vampiric monsters in this 1964 adaptation of I Am Legend.


Dr. Phibes Rises Again
Price is now the abominable Dr. Phibes, a mad scientist out to bring his wife back from the dead who kills everyone who gets in his way with his elaborate contraptions.


The Pit and the Pendulum
Price stars as Nicholas Medina, the son of a notorious torturer of the Spanish Inquisition, who believes his wife has been buried alive and is calling out to him, while in truth she has concocted a nefarious scheme to drive her husband insane – to the point where he begins to believe that he is his own father.