A string of murders has just one thing in common: all those murdered
have stayed in the Hotel Luxor, the best place in town, for a few nights.
Meanwhile, at the hotel, an attractive young woman, Marion Menil (Dawn
Addams) wants to throw herself out of a window to her death, & only
Travers (Peter van Eyck), an American industrialist who is involved in the
production of atom bombs, is able to dissuade her from taking her own
life. He even wants to take the woman into his care, & it soon becomes
clear he has fallen in love with her ...
Meanwhile commissioner Kras (Gert Fröbe), who investigates the
unsolved murders - & while doing so has stumbled over the name of
German pre-war mastercriminal Dr.Mabuse -, has narrowed his circle of
suspects down to three people: Marion Menil, who might just as well have
faked her suicide attempt, the insurance agent Mistelzweig (Werner
Peters), who always seems to be at the center of things & has pretty
much put up shop at the hotel Luxor, & blind soothsayer & medium
Cornelius (Wolfgang Preiss), who just knows a tad too much, even for a
soothsayer. & it seems one of Kras' hunches is right, as soon a bomb
blows up his office & kills his assistant ...
Later, Kras is invited to a seance at Cornelius', & he decides to
bring both Mistelzweig & Marion Menil with him ... & he is almost
shot from the outside, but the bullet was actually meant for Cornelius. Or
indeed was it ... ?
Back at the Luxor, the hotel detective Berg (Andrea Checchi), knowing
that Travers cares for Marion Menil, shows him a little extra that a
previous guest had built into the room next to Marion's: a two-way mirror.
This way, Berg tells Travers,, he can watch over Marion all the time,
withoput her knowing it ... Travers is shocked, but rents the room anyways
Soon, Marion learns that her husband Roberto (Reinhard Kolldehoff), a
violent man she has tried to escape from for months, has picked up her
trail & now comes to get her. Travers watches from the next room,
& sees Roberto threten her with a knife & beating her up ... which
is when Travers jumps through the window, picks up the gun Marion was
forced to drop by her husband, & guns Roberto down. For some reason,
noone seems to have heard the shot, so Travers & Marion can calmly
decide what to do with the body - & soon she figures her personal
doctor Jordan (Wolfgang Preiss) might help her ... & indeed, five
minutes later, Jordan is here & has already brought an ambulance,
& hotel detective Berg, who will do anything for money, helps them to
get the body out of the hotel ...
Later, in the ambulance though, Roberto turns out not to be dead at all
but one of Mabuse's henchmen ... but another one of Mabuse's henchmen cold
bloodedly shoots him dead anyways.
Back at the hotel, Travers starts to have second thoughts:
How come Jordan did manage to get here quite as fast as he did ?
& why was he quite so helpful with something as grave as getting
rid of a corpse & hush up a homicide ?
& didn't Marion when calling him dial a number from inside the
Marion begs him to shut up, as in this hotel, all of the rooms are
equipped with short circuit cameras which are indeed controlled by Doctor
Mabuse, & yes, Marion indeed is one of Mabuse's agent, who was
supposed to marry Travers & then jkill him so that Mabuse could get
his hands on Travers' atom bombs ... But now - need I say it - she has
fallen in love with him & wants to help him make good a getaway - but
alas too late, Mabuse's henchmen are already after them, & soon they
are incarcerated in a asecret room beneath the hotel, Mabuse's
headquarters, where Mabuse, who turns out to be both Cornelius &
Doctor Jordan, wants to starve them to death for having spoiled his plans.
In the meantime though, the police has already arrived at the hotel,
wanting to search the place as a few too many trails lead there, but
Mabuse, in a new disguise, seems to be getting away scot-free, as the
police doesn't even take notice of the elderly gentleman he is now ...
only Mistelzweig, who now toruns out not to be an insurance- but an
Interpol-agent, has put two & two together & put Kras on the right
track ... & soon enough, Kras is pursuing Mabuse & his henchmen in
a wild car chase that ends with Mabuse's car falling off a bridge, with no
hope for survivors ...
Meanwhile, back at the hotel,. Mistelzweig can force hotel detective
Berg, whom he has identified as one of Mabuse's men, to show him Mabuse's
underground hide-out, where he shoots it out with Mabuse's henchmen &
ultimately frees Travers & Marion ... & the day is saved !
After his luck in the USA seems to have run out, Fritz Lang returned to
Germany for a trio of films, the adventure films Das Indische Grabmal/The
Indian Tomb & Der Tiger von Eschnapur/The Tiger of
Eschnapur, & of course Die Tausend Augen des Dr.Mabuse/The
Thousand Eyes of Dr.Mabuse, which would also be his last film ever.
None of these films would however reach the quality of either his German
classics like Metropolis or M or his best American films
like Hangmen also Die, The Woman in the Window or Scarlet
That is not to say however that The Thousand Eyes of Dr.Mabuse
is not ok genre entertainment., it's a tight well-played thriller that
delivers all the punches on a budget. Actually this film wasn't even meant
to be the triumphant return of Fritz Lang to Germany, but a desperate
attempt of Artur Brauner of CCC-Filmkunst to establish a series of
his own that would be able to compete with Rialto's
Wallace series. The attempt of resurrecting pre-war criminal Dr.Mabuse
obviously seemed a good idea in that respect, & it did prove
reasonably successful, as CCC-Filmkunst followed this one with 6
more Mabuse-films (even if the last one, Jess Franco's
rather dull Mabuse 70/La venganza del Dr Mabuse from 1970 is
often ommitted from Mabuse-filmographies). Fritz Lang was
involved in none of the later Mabuse-films.