MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 4,707 this week

The Body Snatcher (1945)

Approved  |   |  Horror, Thriller  |  1946 (Turkey)
7.4
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 5,516 users  
Reviews: 88 user | 53 critic

A ruthless doctor and his young prize student find themselves continually harassed by their murderous supplier of illegal cadavers.

Director:

Writers:

(short story), (written for the screen by), 1 more credit »
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

ON DISC

10 Best Back-to-School TV Shows

Dust off your varsity jacket and get excited for fall with our list of the 10 best back-to-school TV shows.

Visit our Family Entertainment Guide

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 22 titles
created 16 Oct 2011
 
a list of 29 titles
created 09 Jul 2013
 
a list of 40 titles
created 06 Jul 2014
 
a list of 28 titles
created 11 months ago
 
a list of 23 titles
created 10 months ago
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Body Snatcher (1945)

The Body Snatcher (1945) on IMDb 7.4/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Body Snatcher.

User Polls

3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A young Canadian nurse (Betsy) comes to the West Indies to care for Jessica, the wife of a plantation manager (Paul Holland). Jessica seems to be suffering from a kind of mental paralysis ... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Tourneur
Stars: Frances Dee, Tom Conway, James Ellison
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Tom Merriam signs on the ship Altair as third officer under Captain Stone. At first things look good, Stone sees Merriam as a younger version of himself and Merriam sees Stone as the first ... See full summary »

Director: Mark Robson
Stars: Richard Dix, Russell Wade, Edith Barrett
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A seemingly tame leopard used for a publicity stunt escapes and kills a young girl, spreading panic throughout a sleepy new Mexico town.

Director: Jacques Tourneur
Stars: Dennis O'Keefe, Margo, Jean Brooks
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A woman in search of her missing sister uncovers a Satanic cult in New York's Greenwich Village, and finds that they may have something to do with her sibling's random disappearance.

Director: Mark Robson
Stars: Kim Hunter, Tom Conway, Jean Brooks
Cat People (1942)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An American man marries a Serbian immigrant who fears that she will turn into the cat person of her homeland's fables if they are intimate together.

Director: Jacques Tourneur
Stars: Simone Simon, Tom Conway, Kent Smith
Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Insurance detective Steve Hastings is sent by his company to investigate the disappearance of a fellow agent. His first lead is the agent's fetching sister, Victoria, whom he trails to ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: William Lundigan, Jacqueline White, Ricardo Cortez
Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A remake of Richard Connell's famous short story, "The Most Dangerous Game," about a madman who hunts human prey on his personal island habitat.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: John Loder, Audrey Long, Edgar Barrier
Crime | Film-Noir | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A small town newspaperman's investigation into a local bookie operation turns up a web of organized crime.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: John Forsythe, Joan Camden, Harold J. Kennedy
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A lawyer who is planning to run for District Attorney accidentally kills a gangster who owns the nightclub where the attorney's girlfriend is a singer. Although he manages to cover up his ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Tom Conway, Martha O'Driscoll, June Clayworth
The Black Cat (1934)
Horror | Crime | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

American honeymooners in Hungary are trapped in the home of a Satan- worshiping priest when the bride is taken there for medical help following a road accident.

Director: Edgar G. Ulmer
Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, David Manners
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A wrestler and a detective team up to stop a mad scientist who is kidnapping athletes and replacing their brains with those of animals to make them stronger and live longer.

Director: Fernando Méndez
Stars: Columba Domínguez, Crox Alvarado, Wolf Ruvinskis
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

During WWII, adults are either off fighting or busy in the factories, so juvenile delinquency becomes a major problem back home. Danny Hauser, a wounded soldier, finds this out as he ... See full summary »

Director: Mark Robson
Stars: Bonita Granville, Kent Smith, Jean Brooks
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Edith Atwater ...
Russell Wade ...
Rita Corday ...
Mrs. Marsh
Sharyn Moffett ...
Georgina Marsh
Donna Lee ...
Street Singer
Edit

Storyline

In Edinburgh in 1831, Dr. Wolfe MacFarlane runs a medical school where Donald Fettes is a student. Fettes is interested in helping a young girl who has lost the use of her legs. He is certain that MacFarlane's surgical skills could be put to great use but he is reluctant to do so. The good Dr. MacFarlane has a secret that soon becomes all too obvious to young Fettes, who has only recently been promoted as his assistant: he has been paying a local cabbie, John Gray, to supply him with dead bodies for anatomical research. Gray constantly harasses MacFarlane and clearly has a hold over him dating to a famous trial many years before where Gray refused to identify the man for whom he was robbing graves. Fettes isn't aware of any of this but soon realizes exactly how Gray obtains the bodies they use in their anatomy classes. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Screen's Last Word in Shock Sensation! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1946 (Turkey)  »

Also Known As:

Robert Louis Stevenson's The Body Snatcher  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The stock footage that opens the film does not actually depict Edinburgh, Scotland. It was in fact footage of California, where this movie was filmed. See more »

Goofs

The scene in the pub right after it's announced that MacFarlane sold Gray's horse and buggy for a mere four pounds and the new owner is embarrassed into buying him a drink. Right after the barmaid goes to fetch him one, Fettes enters the pub to talk to the Doctor. When the barmaid returns, she has two drinks. Yet she had no indication that MacFarlane was meeting anyone, and the doctor didn't know Fettes was looking for him. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Wolfe 'Toddy' MacFarlane: If you've any regard for your neck, you'll leave now and stay away from my house, from my school, and from me.
Cabman John Gray: Well, I've no wish for a rope cravat. I never like the small of hemp. So I'll bid you good night, Dr McFarlane.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: In Edinburgh, in 1831- See more »

Connections

Version of Horror Maniacs (1948) See more »

Soundtracks

Huntingtower
(uncredited)
("When Ye Gang Awa, Jamie")
(Traditional Scottish folk song)
sung by Donna Lee
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Craftsmanship at its best.
28 October 2003 | by (Deming, New Mexico, USA) – See all my reviews

SPOILERS.

You don't really want to miss this one unless you've been weaned on Arnold Schwarzenegger action movies or Nightmare on Elm Street, Part Twenty, the PreSequal. There is horror galore but served up with frisson.

One can't help admiring Val Lewton and his crew at RKO, working on tiny budgets, but producing miniature gems. It's like painting a masterpiece on the head of a pin. Robert Wise was his director here but the credit goes mainly to producer Lewton, the Russian master of Who Torok. Lewton was insistent on authenticity. The songs we hear are contemporary Scottish folk songs and the wardrobe as close to the real thing as they could get. And Lewton saw to it that "reality" was evoked by small items from the prop department and small incidents on screen. At night, for instance, in order to see something in a dark basement, the doctor calls out for someone to bring a candle. In a less thoughtful movie the deserted basement would have a couple of lanterns already lighted, or the set would be brightly lighted with no visible lanterns at all. A small thing, as I say.

But it's not just historical accuracy that makes Lewton's RKO pictures so appealing. His plots are rooted in time. And his scripts are -- how can one put this without sounding snotty? -- "literate". ("Oh, how we cozzened them!") I don't know how closely the dialogue sticks to Stevenson's original story but it works very well, partly because the actors are so competent. Stealing the dialogue isn't necessarily a bad thing when the words are good to begin with. John Huston lifted most of his dialogue for "The Maltese Falcon" directly from Hammett's novel. And Shakespeare ripped off whole sections of Plutarch's "Lives" for "Julius Caesar." Henry Daniell, like Robert Douglas, later became stereotyped as heavies in Errol Flynn swashbucklers, but Danielle has a far more complex role here -- proud of his medical skills but driven insane by that pride. The accents are mostly American, alas, but the performers at least LOOK right.

Then there is the plot. I know it sounds odd in a producer of horror movies but Lewton was a man of good taste. Driven to find a dead body to sell to Daniell, Karloff decides to murder a sweet-faced young blind girl who is a street singer. A modern movie would give us a bathtub full of blood. Here's what Lewton does. The little girl walks alone down a deserted cobblestone street at night, singing a melancholy tune as she goes. The camera is held on her as she walks under a bridge and disappears in the darkness on the other side. Without any cuts, Karloff's horse and coach enter the frame, plodding slowly along in the girl's wake. The coach disappears into the same darkness under the bridge. We hear the girl's carol cut off at the end of a note with a slight squeak. End of shot. It's a far more moving moment than a dozen multiple on screen slashings and throat cuttings and we haven't seen any of it.

The ending, however, is fairly explicit. Daniell, now mad, gallops furiously through the rainy night along muddy roads, the recently "resurrected" dead body bouncing along in the seat beside him. Instead of the dead woman he has just disinterred, the body is now that of Karloff, revealed only when lightning blindingly illuminates the crazily rocking coach.

"The Body Snatcher" doesn't have the easy shocks of some of Lewton's other works, like "The Curse of the Cat People," no "buses" as Lewton called them.

But there is a sense of evil throughout, or let's call it corruption, and it grows as the film moves quietly along. In its own way it's the equal of anything Lewton did before or after.

Outstanding.


43 of 48 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Is this Karloff's best performance? A_Roode
Henry Daniell norm_gillespie
Who Would You Cast in a Remake? tj-94
About Gray.. ilpohirvonen
The Body Snatcher (2009) - Remake? Waz-Q8
Tim Burton Remake davenport-graham
Discuss The Body Snatcher (1945) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?