IMDb > The Man They Could Not Hang (1939)

The Man They Could Not Hang (1939) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

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6.8/10   684 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Karl Brown (screenplay)
George Wallace Sayre (story)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Man They Could Not Hang on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
17 August 1939 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
TRANSFORMED BY THE HANGMAN'S NOOSE...from a doctor serving humanity into a demon filled with hate...and terrorizing blood-lust! See more »
Plot:
When Dr. Savaard's experiment in cryonics is interrupted by the short-sighted authorities, his volunteer dies, and he is condemned to death. He vows vengeance if he can survive his own hanging. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Now a mechanical heart sounds silly...... doesn't it? See more (25 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Boris Karloff ... Dr. Henryk Savaard
Lorna Gray ... Janet Savaard
Robert Wilcox ... 'Scoop' Foley
Roger Pryor ... District Attorney Drake

Don Beddoe ... Police Lt. Shane

Ann Doran ... Betty Crawford
Joe De Stefani ... Dr. Stoddard
Charles Trowbridge ... Judge Bowman
Byron Foulger ... Lang
Dick Curtis ... Jury Foreman Clifford Kearney
James Craig ... Juror Watkins
John Tyrrell ... Juror Sutton
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
George Anderson ... Prison Warden (uncredited)
Sam Ash ... Druggist (uncredited)
Stanley Blystone ... Prison Guard (uncredited)
Harlan Briggs ... Defense Attorney Parker (uncredited)
Stanley Brown ... Bob Roberts (uncredited)
Flo Campbell ... Housewife (uncredited)
John Dilson ... King - City Editor (uncredited)
Carl Faulkner ... Bailiff (uncredited)
Chuck Hamilton ... Juror (uncredited)
Frank Jaquet ... Cigar-Smoking Fat Juror (uncredited)
Kenner G. Kemp ... Reporter (uncredited)
William Lally ... Bailiff (uncredited)
Perc Launders ... Bailiff (uncredited)
Larry Lund ... Court Clerk (uncredited)
Ian Maclaren ... Priest (uncredited)
Charles McAvoy ... Prison Official (uncredited)
Charles Miller ... Dr. Avery - Juror (uncredited)
Bert Moorhouse ... Reporter (uncredited)
Franklin Parker ... Second Reporter (uncredited)
Tom Quinn ... Reporter (uncredited)
Bob Reeves ... Juror (uncredited)
Walter Sande ... Reporter at Typewriter (uncredited)

Robert Sterling ... First Reporter (uncredited)
Edward Thomas ... Butler (uncredited)
Cyril Thornton ... Senior Butler (uncredited)

Directed by
Nick Grinde  (as Nick Grindé)
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Karl Brown  screenplay
George Wallace Sayre  story
Leslie T. White  story

Produced by
Wallace MacDonald .... producer (uncredited)
 
Cinematography by
Benjamin H. Kline  (as Benjamin Kline)
 
Film Editing by
William A. Lyon  (as William Lyon)
 
Makeup Department
Clay Campbell .... makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Thomas Flood .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
George Cooper .... sound engineer (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Morris Stoloff .... musical director (as M.W. Stoloff)
R.H. Bassett .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Joseph Nussbaum .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Ben Oakland .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
George Parrish .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Karol Rathaus .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
William Grant Still .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Gregory Stone .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
 

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
64 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Part of the Son of Shock package of 20 titles released to television in 1958, which followed the original Shock Theater release of 52 features one year earlier. This was also one of the 11 Columbia titles, the other 61 all being Universals.See more »
Quotes:
Dr. Henryk Savaard:Always remember I offered you life, and you gave me death!See more »

FAQ

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9 out of 11 people found the following review useful.
Now a mechanical heart sounds silly...... doesn't it?, 7 January 2005
Author: Mike-764 (michaelnella@yahoo.com) from Flushing, NY

Dr. Henryk Savaard works with his assistant Lang and medical student Bob Roberts in Dr. Savaard's experiments in the use of a mechanical heart to prolong life. Roberts risks his life in the experiment where Savaard will kill him and bring him back from the dead. This unnerves Dr. Savaard's nurse (and Roberts' girlfriend) Betty Crawford, who sends for the police, and when they arrive arrest Dr. Savaard for killing Roberts. At his trial, Dr. Savaard tries to explain his methods and experiments were in the name of science, but they fall on deaf ears as he is convicted and sentenced to hang. He donates his body to science, and most specifically to Lang, who plans to bring him back to life using Dr. Savaard's process. Scoop Foley, a news reporter who covered the trial (and fell for Dr. Savaard's daughter Janet) notices that six members of the Savaard jury committed suicide by hanging, and that the remaining jurors, and the judge, prosecutor, police inspector, and Ms. Crawford have been invited to the Savaard house where the doctor plans to have all of them die one by one, but he doesn't expect his daughter to arrive. This is one heck of a movie with everything that the B sci-fi/horror flick should have. Watching Karloff, I can only think how much more respected he could be if he didn't have to subject himself to these B movies which he excels in. Grinde makes excellent use of camera-work, as well as shadow and light. The script does seem like it won't differ from anything else in the genre, but it continually goes further into new twists and turns with the Agatha Christie like revenge Savaard plans. My only regret is that the film wasn't longer. Excellent ending. Rating, based on B movies, 10.

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