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The Devil's Mask (1946)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Crime | 23 May 1946 (USA)
A crashed plane that had a shrunken head aboard is the only clue to a mystery involving a secret code.



(radio series I Love a Mystery), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


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Complete credited cast:
Jim Bannon ...
Michael Duane ...
Mona Barrie ...
Louise Mitchell
Barton Yarborough ...
Ludwig Donath ...
Dr. Karger
Paul E. Burns ...
Leon Hartman
Prof. Arthur Logan


Based on the "I Love a Mystery" radio program (where most of the stories were told in serial fashion over several episodes): Searching through the wreckage of a crashed airline, the police find five shrunken human heads, and one of them is a white man with red hair. The head belonged to an explorer, deemed lost on an expedition to South America, and is tagged as a victim of jungle savagery. His daughter thinks otherwise, and suspects foul-play outside the jungle. She hires a team of private detectives to investigate, and points them in the direction of her stepmother and a colleague of her father, who appears to be more than a colleague of the stepmother. The detective, however, also looks in another direction and vocation for the killer. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TRAPPED IN A MAN-MADE JUNGLE! (original ad - all caps)


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

23 May 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Head  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Second of the three 'I Love a Mystery' thrillers, based on the popular radio series of the same name. See more »


Followed by The Unknown (1946) See more »

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User Reviews

Enjoyable mystery programmer
31 August 2001 | by (NYC & Cherry Grove) – See all my reviews

"The Devil's Mask" (1946) is one of the "I LOVE A MYSTERY" series of B-movies produced by Columbia Studios, based on the then-popular radio show. Poker faced Jim Bannon heads up a duo of private detectives who appear in each of the mysteries.

This one begins after a shrunken head is found in the ruins of a crashed plane that was headed from California to Latin America. A woman, who believes that her step-daughter is planning to kill her, hires the pair of detectives.

The mystery deepens when the woman's butler is killed by a poison dart from a blow-gun similar to those used by the jungle tribe of head-hunters responsible for the shrunken head. Add a blackmailing psychiatrist, a crazy taxidermist, a ferocious black panther, a few nebulous characters of dubious repute, and you have an atmospheric little chiller that's most enjoyable.

You may be able to figure out who the killer is, but that won't stop you from searching out more of these neat little "I LOVE A MYSTERY" thrillers.

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