Film / Circus of Fear

Circus of Fear (a.k.a. Circus of Terror, a.k.a. Psycho-Circus) is a 1966 British mystery/thriller film starring Christopher Lee, Klaus Kinski, Suzy Kendall, Cecil Parker, and Victor Maddern.

A group of professional criminals rob a bank truck on the London Bridge. During the heist, one of them shoots a guard who is trying to escape. This leads to complications that lead the police to a circus. The circus, which has more than its share of troubled personalities, is implicated as the police follow a trail from the robbers, and specifically, the shooter.

Circus of Fear contains examples of:

  • Armed Blag: The film opens with a armoured car being robbed on London Bridge.
  • Circus of Fear: Right there in the title.
  • Cool Mask: The mysterious lion-tamer Gregor wears a full face mask to conceal the scars he received from a lion attack years before. It serves to heighten the air of mystery that surrounds the character.
  • Hand of Death: For much of the film, the killer is seen only as a gloved hand.
  • Knife-Throwing Act: The final denouement occurs in front of the assembled suspects during a knife-throwing act.