"Nine killed you. Nine shall die. Nine times, nine! Nine killed you! Nine shall die! Nine eternities in DOOM!"
Description: The blood oath of Dr. Anton Phibes (Vincent Price) in the horror film The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971).
Dr. Anton Phibes is doctor, scientist, organist, and biblical scholar who blames the death of his wife, Victoria on nine people involved in her unsuccessful surgery. Seeking revenge he swears:
"My love, sweet Queen and noble wife. I alone remain to bring delivery of your pain. Severed my darling, too quickly from this life. Of fires drawn and memories met, I shall hold our two hearts again in single time. Nine killed you. Nine shall die. Nine times, nine! Nine killed you! Nine shall die! Nine eternities in DOOM!"
With the help from Vulnavia (Virginia North), a mute assistant, Phibes kills off his enemies in a series of spectacular and extremely cruel executions inspired by the Hebrew plagues placed on the Egyptian Pharaoh during Exodus. His method of executions included:
- Being attacked by killer bats.
- A party mask that slowly crushes its wearers skull.
- Draining all the blood from a victim while still alive.
- Freezing a man to death with a minus 100 degree zero hail storm.
- Placing rats in a plane cockpit to force a crash.
- Impaling a man's chest with a brass statue of a unicorn.
- Dropping locusts onto the face of a sleeping nurse which eat away her flesh.
- Forcing Dr. Vesalius (Joseph Cotton), the surgeon who operated on Phibes' wife, to use his surgical skills to save his son’s life who is strapped on a gurney beneath an acid bath (a key sewn inside the boy’s body has to be removed within six-minutes to unlock the restraining collar holding him to the table). "Nine killed her; nine shall die! Eight have died, soon to be nine! Nine eternities in doom! The organ plays till midnight! The large house in Maldene Square. Come alone!"
|Dr. Phibes:||I will have killed nine times in my life, Dr. Vesalius; how many murders can be attributed to you?|
|Dr. Vesalius:||None, for I did not kill your wife!|
|Dr. Vesalius:||I tried to save her...|
|Dr. Phibes:||With a knife in your hands? Doctor, I have no faith in your profession! I was told, after my crash that I would never speak again. The doctors were, of course, wrong, for as you see and can hear, I have used my knowledge of music and acoustics to re-create my voice!|
|Dr. Vesalius:||You don't need to remind me of your ingenuity, Dr. Phibes... WHERE IS MY SON?|
As Dr. Vesalius struggles to save his son, Dr. Phibes taunts, "A few remaining minutes are all you have because when the acid reaches him he will have a face like mine! Work faster, Doctor! The acid is descending! My wife existed only six minutes on the operating table, and then she was dead. You murdered her... MURDERED HER... But 'he' will have what 'she' did not: a second chance!"
With only seconds left, Dr. Vesalius saves his son. Defeated, Dr. Phibes retreats to an underground crypt where he sleeps in a coffin waiting to rise again.
Note: Dr. Phibes continues in Dr. Phibes Rises Again (1972) as he searches for the mystical Scrolls of life to resurrect his dearly departed spouse.
"Victoria, for three years I have rested by your side. Now the moon has risen to the exact position which last occurred two thousand years ago, signaling the opening of this crypt, and the beginning of our greatest adventure. We shall embark to the land of Egypt, where years ago I did prepare for us a wondrous shrine. I shall search for the river of life, which holds the key to resurrection for you and eternal life for both of us."
When Phibes returns to the land of the living, he finds his house destroyed and valuable parchments that he needs to locate The Temple of Abiskis and the river of life are stolen.
"No! While I slept in sweet oblivion, who dared destroy my house? The safe. Could it still be here? What fiend has taken it? Only one who seeks eternal life as I do... Beiderbeck! Those devils! To take from me the two treasures of my life! I shall get them back; he who tries to stop me will die!"
With the aid of Vulnavia and a pet hawk, Phibes hunts down those who stole his property and kills anyone who gets in the way of his mission for eternal life.
"Oh, what happy times of years ago I think of, Victoria. It won't be long now. Soon you will be moving, breathing. Thy in my arms again and I in yours."