A plague called the Red Death is sweeping through the local villages and Prince Prospero (Vincent Price) has ordered the village to be burned to the ground.
Prospero is a Satanist and rules the land ruthlessly. When two starving peasants confront Prospero he orders them killed. The one peasant’s daughter Francesca (Jane Asher) begs for mercy. Prospero takes Francesca back to his castle and imprisons the two men.
Prospero invites all the local nobility to his castle for a party. Prospero’s also tries to seduce Francesca much to Prospero’s mistress Juliana’s (Hazel Court) dismay.
Juliana wants to join Prospero’s Satanic cult. Meanwhile a red cloaked figure is lurking around and the villagers are getting desperate as the plague ravishes through them. They seek shelter at the castle while the party goes on.
Director Roger Corman had been adapting several Edgar Allen Poe stories and this is one of his more stylish and artistic interpretations. Price is excellent as always.