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The Invisible Woman (1940)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance, Sci-Fi | 27 December 1940 (USA)
An attractive model with an ulterior motive volunteers as guinea pig for an invisibility machine.

Writers:

(original story) (as Kurt Siodmak), (original story) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Richard Russell
...
George (as Charlie Ruggles)
...
Blackie Cole (as Oscar Homolka)
...
Bill
Donald MacBride ...
Foghorn
...
Mrs. Jackson
...
...
Jean
Kathryn Adams ...
Peggy
...
Marie
...
Growley
Mary Gordon ...
Mrs. Bates
...
Hudson
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Storyline

Eccentric Professor Gibbs, brilliant but impractical, invents an invisibility machine and advertises for a guinea pig. What he gets is Kitty Carroll, an attractive, adventurous model, who thinks being invisible would help her settle a few scores. Complications arise when three comic gangsters steal the machine to use on their boss. But they fail to reckon with the Revenge of the Invisible Woman! Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

IT'S A Ghost-to-Ghost HOOK-UP! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 December 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La mujer invisible  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Margaret Sullavan, who owed Universal one picture on an old contract, was originally assigned the starring role. With more attractive roles being floated her way, she balked at appearing in the film, feeling it was beneath her. When she failed to appear for the rehearsals, the studio slapped her with a restraining order preventing her from working anywhere. Eventually she agreed to fulfill her contract by appearing in Back Street (1941) and Virginia Bruce stepped into the role. See more »

Goofs

Virginia Bruce was dressed in black velvet and shot against a black background as part of the special-effects process of making her appear invisible. When the Invisible Woman is undressing in front of a startled Mr. Growley, her black velvet-clad arms are visible whenever they cross in front of her legs or torso. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Attorney: Where is he? Where is he? Get up! Get up!
George: I am up. I was up. And I've been up all night. I would have stayed up if you hadn't knocked me down.
See more »

Connections

Followed by Son of Dracula (1943) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Mixed Bag But A Great Cast
7 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

What a strong cast for such a silly and stupid (but still decent) movie! Classic movie fans know these names: John Barrymore, Virginia Bruce, John Howard, Charles Ruggles, Oscar Homolka, Shemp Howard, Edward Brophy and Margaret Hamilton.

They are all here in this female version of The Invisible Man. Actually, as stupid as it can get, it also provides a number of funny scenes so I guess it served its purpose.

It's only 73 minutes long, but it should have been shorter as the gags wear thin after 40 minutes. Ruggles almost steals the show as the butler. He provides most of the humor in a real slapstick manner. As in a lot of these old comedies, some of this stuff is really corny but I did laugh out loud at a couple things.

Bruce and John Howard are attractive leads and Barrymore is effective as the typically-portrayed-in-classic films eccentric scientist. It was also fun to see Shemp Howard, of Three Stooges fame, play a gangster, although a Stooge-like goofy one.

The special effects were good in their day but not now. In fact, the DVD is sharp enough that you can see the outline of Bruce's head when she's supposed to be invisible!


18 of 24 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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