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Doctor X (1932)

Unrated  |   |  Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller  |  27 August 1932 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 1,606 users  
Reviews: 50 user | 31 critic

A wisecracking New York reporter intrudes on a research scientist's quest to unmask The Moon Killer.

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(screen play), (screen play), 3 more credits »
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Title: Doctor X (1932)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Joanne Xavier
...
Lee Taylor
Preston Foster ...
Dr. Wells
...
Dr. Haines
Harry Beresford ...
Dr. Duke
Arthur Edmund Carewe ...
Dr. Rowitz
Leila Bennett ...
Mamie
Robert Warwick ...
Police Commissioner Stevens
...
Otto
Willard Robertson ...
Detective O'Halloran
Thomas E. Jackson ...
Daily World Editor (as Thomas Jackson)
Harry Holman ...
Mike - Waterfront Policeman
...
Cathouse Madame
Tom Dugan ...
Sheriff
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Storyline

A monster lurks as New York newspaperman Lee Taylor investigates one of the "Moon Killer" murders, in which the victims are strangled, cannibalized and surgically incised under the light of the full moon. The trail leads to the cliffside mansion of Dr. Xavier, where the doctor and his colleagues conduct a strange experiment. Written by Diana Hamilton <hamilton@gl.umbc.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Out-Thrills Them All!


Certificate:

Unrated

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 August 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

O Monstro  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(2-strip Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The New York waterfront sequences were shot on the still standing Twinkletoes (1926) set left over from the 1926 Colleen Moore vehicle, in which in stood in for London's Limehouse District. See more »

Goofs

As Dr. Xavier displays the wax figures of the murder victims, on the first figure, that of the "woman of the streets", the left hand can be seen trembling slightly. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Haines, Academy of Surgical Research: Were the murdered women... attacked?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Skin I Live In (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Agitato
(uncredited)
Music by Bernhard Kaun
Stock cue played over main titles
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Doctor X (1932) **1/2
28 January 2006 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

DOCTOR X is one of those heartbreaking films to watch for a fan of old horror movies, because it has so many wonderful things going for it yet just narrowly misses the mark of being really good due to a liability or two which could have been avoided. As is so often the case with early '30s fright films like this, the need was felt to add a "funnyman" to the proceedings to perhaps give audiences of the day a chance to laugh along with being scared. The culprit in this case is Lee Tracy, who plays a typical golden age newspaper reporter who snoops around and gets his nose tangled into everyone's business.

The "business" at hand is a string of killings in New York regarding a fiend who strangles people and then apparently cannibalizes them. Dr. Xavier (the always enjoyable Lionel Atwill) heads a group of doctors who are all suspects up for scrutiny, and though we have to deal with the frequent lapses into silliness from Mr. Tracy, this old chestnut is interesting and gripping a fair amount of its running time. Director Michael Curtiz does a fine job of visually entertaining us with strange angles, quick closeups and flashy set designs. An added delight is the early use of two-strip color that gives the film a rather eerie dimension with its muted greens. Fay Wray (KING KONG) steps into another early horror picture here, but really doesn't have much to do and isn't of much use to the story. There's a completely out of place beach scene with Wray and Tracy that will leave you wondering who thought it shouldn't be left on the cutting room floor (perhaps it was an excuse to get a pantie shot of Fay as she sunbathes under her big beach umbrella).

The film's strongest moment comes in a revelation sequence late in the movie where we finally get to see who the crazed murderer is, and it's still chilling even now to watch him go through his insane routine. You're bound to have the words "synthetic flesh" etched into your subconscious for a long time after seeing DOCTOR X, and if there's one thing you'll remember, this will be it. **1/2 out of ****


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