Deresco owner of a night club in neutral Portugal, works a free-lance spy for everybody who can afford his price. He tries to get information from US agent John Craig with help from ... See full summary »
Erich von Stroheim
Dr. Richard Marlowe uses a combination of voodoo rite and hypnotic suggestion to attempt to revivify his beautiful, but long-dead wife, by transferring the life essences of several hapless ... See full summary »
Deep in the jungles a mad scientist is using the natives' voodoo for his experiments to create an indestructible being to serve his will. When a party of gold seekers stumbles upon his ... See full summary »
A number of swamp land men have died by strangulation and the inhabitants believe that an innocent man they hanged is seeking revenge on all of the male descendants of those responsible for... See full summary »
Rosemary La Planche,
Star Vera Ralston was an ice-skating champion from Czechoslovakie who had made a few skating pictures for Republic. Studio chief Herbert J. Yates--who was also her boyfriend--decided she could be a star and put her into the lead in this film. Unfortunately, she spoke very little English and--according to longtime Republic director Joseph Kane--spoke all of her lines phonetically, without having any idea of what she was actually saying. See more »
Prof. Franz Mueller:
What do I know about the brain itself? Nothing. Can it think? Remember after its body is dead? Could it be made to feel, to hear perhaps, or to express itself in some way? To contact the living?
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Not as good as the 1953 version, but still an entertaining forties thriller.
THE LADY AND THE MONSTER is the first version of Curt Siodmak's often filmed novel "Donovan's Brain". This first version is largely forgotten, and those that recall it usually dis-miss it as inferior to the 1953 version DONOVAN'S BRAIN with Lew Ayres. While the 1953 version is superior in almost every way, THE LADY AND THE MONSTER is still an entertaining, atmospheric 1940's thriller.
The plot is basically the same, but in this version the living brain of Donovan possesses the mind of scientist Richard Arlen to clear his illegitimate son who has been wrongly convicted of murder. The brain also wants to get revenge on his daughter, whom is just as money hungry and ruthless as Donovan was in "life." Even though Donovan's goals are good, his disembodied brain is still ruthless; he orders the possessed Arlen to kill a girl who gave false testimony at his son's trial.
We can always tell when Donovan is about to possess Arlen, the lighting and Arlen's make-up changes. The 1953 version employed no such tricks, and relied entirely on the acting skills of Lew Ayers. (See my entry on that version). Erich Von Stroheim plays the elder scientist, and as with any film he was in, he was always a commanding presence. There are hints of him having an unhealthy infatuation with Vera Ralston, but this doesn't lead anywhere.
Overall, LADY AND THE MONSTER isn't as good as the later 1953 version, but it is still a decent 1940's horror thriller.
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