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Captive Wild Woman (1943)

 -  Horror | Sci-Fi  -  4 June 1943 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.9/10 from 353 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 13 critic

An insane scientist doing experimentation in glandular research becomes obsessed with transforming a female gorilla into a human...even though it costs human life.



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Title: Captive Wild Woman (1943)

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Cast overview:
Acquanetta ...
Dr. Sigmund Walters
Evelyn Ankers ...
Beth Colman
Fred Mason
Lloyd Corrigan ...
John Whipple
Fay Helm ...
Nurse Strand
Dorothy Colman (as Martha MacVicar)
Vince Barnett ...
Curly, a rube
Gruen, the handler


A mad scientist transplants human glands into a gorilla, turning the ape into a beautiful young woman (Acquanetta). However, a severe emotional jolt soon reverts her back into her primitive self with disastrous consequences. Written by Jeremy Lunt <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


STRANGEST OF SIGHTS... The brain of an animal... the form of a woman! See more »


Horror | Sci-Fi


Unrated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

4 June 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Captive Wild Woman  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Part of the SON OF SHOCK package of 21 titles released to television in 1958, which followed the original SHOCK THEATER release of 52 features one year earlier. See more »


The same shot of two lions fighting in a circus cage that is used about 12 minutes into the film is re-utilized near the end of the film during the storm sequence. See more »


[first lines]
Dockworker: Clear the dock! Clear the dock!
See more »


Referenced in Board James: HeroQuest (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

Better than the material deserves - thanks to Edward Dmytryk - but ends too abruptly
22 October 2007 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

Silly, forgotten Universal horror film, now found on DVD in a Best Buy exclusive set. This one concerns a mad scientist with Nazi undertones (John Carradine) who kidnaps a circus gorilla and turns her into a human being (played by Acquanetta). As a human, Acquanetta has an uncanny ability to control lions and tigers, and is thus employed at a local circus (the one whence she, as the gorilla, was kidnapped) to help big cat tamer Milburn Stone. If Milburn Stone looks familiar, it's because he became famous as "Doc" Adams on Gunsmoke. The movie is silly but fun, with Carradine hamming it up like he usually does. And, while Acquanetta does little acting, she has a hypnotic look with those giant eyes. Unfortunately, the film, like many of the Universal Horror movies, ends abruptly, with a weird narration about the Carradine character. The animal work is pretty stunning for the time, and the editing is mostly convincing that Stone and the big cats are in the cage simultaneously. I would credit director Dmytryk, who was far too competent to be directing this kind of crap (the next year he would do the wonderful Murder My Sweet). If you love animals, you might be sickened at what is done to them. Lions and tigers are thrown into a cage and forced to fight each other. The one big fight ends with a fire hose, and the tiger, at least, looked like it was badly injured. The film is completely forgotten nowadays, but it did spawn two sequels.

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