OK, I didn't even know there was a book called Torture Garden by Octave Mirbeau written during the Dreyfus Affair. I only know about the Dreyfus affair thanks to my background in Art History, and something about Degas being a racist. When you type "Torture Garden" into google, you get links to the "World's Leading Fetish Club" (no surprise) and Mirbeau's book, which I am guessing is NOT what I think its about. And neither is the film "Torture Garden." There is no garden, and no torture. WTF?
What is does have is the AWESOME Burgess Meredith playing "Dr Diabolo" (really?), a Carnival Barker that convinces a couple of assholes to pay extra to have their futures read by a statue of Atropus (you can google that, I did.) All of their futures are bad of course, due to shitty, horrible decisions that they will make. Or not. They have the opportunity to change things, if they can overcome their "evil." Now we all know that Jack Palance is not getting over his "evil." He stars in the best story (Torture Garden is an omnibus of short stories) about a man obsessed with Edgar Allan Poe. He meets another Poe obsessive (the equally awesome Peter Cushing) who has a collection that includes the re-animated corpse of Poe! Pretty cool and actually a bit creepy. Yeah Zombie Poe! Anyway I liked the film.