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Donovan's Brain (1953)

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Reviews: 33 user | 15 critic

Yet another version of Curt Siodmak's novel about an honest scientist who keeps the brain of a ruthless dead millionaire (Donovan) alive in a tank. Donovan manages to impose his powerful ... See full summary »

Director:

(as Felix Feist)

Writers:

(novel), (adaptation), 1 more credit »
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Directors: Curt Siodmak, Herbert L. Strock
Stars: Richard Carlson, King Donovan, Jean Byron
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Gene Evans ...
...
Janice Cory (as Nancy Davis)
Steve Brodie ...
Herbie Yocum
Tom Powers ...
Donovan's Washington Advisor
Lisa Howard ...
Chloe Donovan (as Lisa K. Howard)
James Anderson ...
Chief Tuttle (as Kyle James)
Victor Sutherland ...
Nathaniel Fuller
Michael Colgan ...
Tom Donovan
Peter Adams ...
Mr. Webster
Harlan Warde ...
Treasury Agent Brooke
Shimen Ruskin ...
Tailor
Edit

Storyline

Yet another version of Curt Siodmak's novel about an honest scientist who keeps the brain of a ruthless dead millionaire (Donovan) alive in a tank. Donovan manages to impose his powerful will on the scientist, and uses him to murder his enemies. Written by Marty McKee <mmckee@wkio.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Sci-Fi | Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 September 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Donovans Hirn  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Writer Curt Siodmak was also set to direct, but at the last minute he was replaced by Felix E. Feist. See more »

Goofs

At one point, Frank (Gene Evans) states "Pat made that recording while the brain was destroying Yocum." However, in the final edited version of the movie, Pat (Dr. Cory, played by Lew Ayres) makes his recording several days before Yocum is killed. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Patrick J. Cory: [after Cory wakes Scratt up from a drunken stupor] My dear Dr. Schratt, you sober up with more
[pauses and shrugs]
Dr. Patrick J. Cory: grace than anyone I ever saw. You're terrific. C'mon, let's go.
Dr. Frank Schratt: Are you kidding?
[He hold out his shaking hand]
Dr. Frank Schratt: . Look! Nope.
Dr. Patrick J. Cory: Frank, don't let me down.
Dr. Frank Schratt: What's more useless than a surgeon with a hangover? I'm a drunken zero.! I pass!
Dr. Patrick J. Cory: No, you don't. I'd rather have you do a corneal transplant for me drunk than anyone else sober.
[Pulls him by the arm]
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Car 54, Where Are You?: Change Your Partner (1961) See more »

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User Reviews

Silly but entertaining mind control yarn. Great fun!
23 January 2003 | by (Perth, Australia) – See all my reviews

Veteran actor Lew Ayres, best known to many old movie buffs as 'Dr Kildare', plays Cory, a scientist experimenting with monkey's brains, seeing if it is possible for them to exist outside the body. He is assisted in his innovative work by his devoted wife Janice (the future Nancy "Just Say No" Reagan), and his alcoholic surgeon sidekick Schratt ('Shock Corridor's Gene Evans, in the film's best performance). A plane crashes near their laboratory, and the only survivor is taken there as it isn't thought he will live long enough to make it to the nearest hospital. Unable to save the man, Cory decides to secretly preserve the brain. The man is soon revealed to be ruthless multi-millionaire businessman Donovan. Cory's gamble pays off and the brain not only survives, but thrives. As it does it begins to control Cory, making him into a slave. Donovan's brain wants to continue to use his business empire for world domination, and will kill anyone who stands in his way. Cory's wife and colleague are helpless to stop what is going on. Now, there is a strong element of silliness throughout this thriller. The brain actually grows larger and pulses, and Ayers does the whole "must... stop....brain...before...it's...too...late' routine which quite possibly taught William Shatner a thing or two. But if enter into the spirit of the thing, this is one hell of an entertaining b-grade science fiction yarn, and lots of fun. For a different approach to the same Siodmak source material check out the early sixties mystery movie 'The Brain' starring Peter van Eyck.


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