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The Body Snatcher (1945) - Plot Summary Poster

Plot Summary

  • 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
  • In 1831, in Edinburgh, the prominent doctor and professor Dr. Wolfe 'Toddy' MacFarlane buys corpses for his studies and classes of anatomy from the notorious cabman John Gray, who is also a body snatcher. When his talented student Donald Fettes tells that he will quit medical school since his family cannot afford to support him, MacFarlane hires him as his assistant to permit Fettes to proceed his studies. Fettes meets a little girl that cannot walk anymore due to a coach accident, and he tries to convince Dr. MacFarlane to operate her but the doctor is reluctant. Soon Fettes discovers that Dr. MacFarlane has a secret from his past and Gray blackmails him. When Fettes learns how Gray obtains the corpses for Dr. MacFarlane, he has an inner conflict and does not want to continue as Dr. MacFarlane's protégée. But isn't it too late?

    - Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  • In Edinburgh, renowned surgeon and now teacher of anatomy Dr. MacFarlane, has been paying John Gray, a cabman, to clandestinely bring him exhumed bodies of the recently deceased for classroom demonstration purposes. With cemeteries being increasingly guarded, Gray turns to murder to provide MacFarlane with fresh bodies. Realizing that he will never be rid of Gray, who constantly taunts him with his knowledge of MacFarland's past indiscretions, MacFarlane engages the malevolent Gray in a hand-to-hand fight to the death, the ultimate results of which provide the victor with an episode of unprecedented psychological horror.

    - Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>
  • Based on a Robert Louis Stevenson story, a young medical student learns that both good and evil are manifested in all men.

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

    - Written by Kenneth Chisholm

Synopsis

A gruesome tale of a reality of 19th Century medicine. Karloff portrays Mr. Gray, a dubious supplier of human cadavers for medical experimentation...

See full synopsis » (Warning: contains spoilers!)

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