IMDb > The Brain That Wouldn't Die (1962)
The Brain That Wouldn't Die
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The Brain That Wouldn't Die (1962) More at IMDbPro »

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Down 3% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Joseph Green (screenplay)
Rex Carlton (original story) ...
View company contact information for The Brain That Wouldn't Die on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
10 August 1962 (USA) See more »
Alive... without a body... fed by an unspeakable horror from hell! See more »
A doctor experimenting with transplant techniques keeps his girlfriend's head alive when she is decapitated in a car crash, then goes hunting for a new body. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
(14 articles)
User Reviews:
A Little Head, Any One? See more (159 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Jason Evers ... Dr. Bill Cortner (as Herb Evers)

Virginia Leith ... Jan Compton / Jan in the Pan
Anthony La Penna ... Kurt (as Leslie Daniel)
Adele Lamont ... Doris Powell
Bonnie Sharie ... Blonde Stripper
Paula Morris ... Brunet Stripper

Marilyn Hanold ... Peggy Howard (as Marlyn Hanold)
Bruce Brighton ... Dr. Cortner
Arny Freeman ... Photographer
Fred Martin ... Medical Assistant
Lola Mason ... Donna Williams
Doris Brent ... Nurse
Bruce Kerr ... Beauty Contest M.C.
Audrey Devereal ... Jeannie Reynolds (as Audrey Devereau)
Eddie Carmel ... Monster
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Sammy Petrillo ... Art (uncredited)

Directed by
Joseph Green 
Writing credits
Joseph Green (screenplay)

Rex Carlton (original story) and
Joseph Green (original story)

Produced by
Rex Carlton .... producer
Mort Landberg .... associate producer
Cinematography by
Stephen Hajnal (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Marc Anderson 
Art Direction by
Paul Fanning 
Makeup Department
George Fiala .... makeup artist
Production Management
Alfred H. Lessner .... production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Tony LaMarca .... assistant director
Art Department
Walter Pluff Jr. .... propertyman
Sound Department
Emil Kolisch .... sound
Robert E. Lessner .... sound
Special Effects by
Byron Baer .... special effects
Camera and Electrical Department
Vincent Delaney .... gaffer
John Haupt Jr. .... grip
Jack Priestley .... camera operator (as John S. Priestley)
Editorial Department
Leonard Anderson .... supervising film editor
Other crew
Eva Blair .... script supervisor
Doris Brent .... additional dialogue
Linda Brent .... assistant to producer
Jim Geallis .... assistant to producer (as James Gealis)
Reynold Brown .... movie poster art (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
82 min (uncut version) | USA:70 min (TCM print)
Aspect Ratio:
1.66 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:PG | Canada:PG (Ontario) | Canada:G (Quebec) | UK:Rejected (original rating) | UK:12 (video rating) (2006) | USA:Approved | West Germany:18 (nf) (cut)

Did You Know?

Filmed in 1959 but, due to various legal and censorship problems, not released until 1962.See more »
Continuity: Kurt is upstairs in the living room and there is a fairly decent breeze blowing the curtains. However, the windows are shut as seen in earlier and again in later shots.See more »
Dr. Bill Cortner:[to Dr. Courtner] Nothing is unbelievable if you have the nerve to operate.See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Burying the Ex (2014)See more »
The WebSee more »


Is this available on DVD?
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25 out of 26 people found the following review useful.
A Little Head, Any One?, 11 June 2007
Author: gftbiloxi ( from Biloxi, Mississippi

THE BRAIN THAT WOULDN'T DIE was considered so distasteful in 1959 that several cuts and the passage of three years was required before it was released in 1962. Today it is difficult to imagine how anyone could have taken the thing seriously even in 1959; the thing is both lurid and lewd, but it is also incredibly ludicrous in a profoundly bumptious sort of way.

The story, of course, concerns a doctor who is an eager experimenter in transplanting limbs--and when his girl friend is killed in a car crash he rushes her head to his secret lab. With the aid of a few telephone cords, a couple of clamps, and what looks very like a shallow baking pan, he brings her head back to life. But is she grateful? Not hardly. In fact, she seems mightily ticked off about the whole thing, particularly when it transpires that the doctor plans to attach her head to another body.

As it happens, the doctor is picky about this new body: he wants one built for speed, and he takes to cruising disconcerted women on city sidewalks, haunting strip joints, visiting body beautiful contests, and hunting down cheesecake models in search of endowments that will raise his eyebrow. But back at the lab, the head has developed a chemically-induced psychic link with another one of the doctor's experiments, this one so hideous that it is kept locked out of sight in a handy laboratory closet. Can they work together to get rid of the bitter and malicious lab assistance, wreck revenge upon the doctor, and save the woman whose body he hankers for? Could be! Leading man Jason Evers plays the roguish doctor as if he's been given a massive dose of Spanish fly; Virginia Leith, the unhappy head, screeches and cackles in spite of the fact that she has no lungs and maybe not even any vocal chords. Busty babes gyrate to incredibly tawdry music, actors make irrational character changes from line to line, the dialogue is even more nonsensical than the plot, and you'll need a calculator to add up the continuity goofs. On the whole THE BRAIN THAT WOULDN'T DIE comes off as even more unintentionally funny than an Ed Wood movie.

Director Joseph Green actually manages to keep the whole thing moving at pretty good clip, and looking at the film today it is easy to pick out scenes that influenced later directors, who no doubt saw the thing when they were young and impressionable and never quite got over it. The cuts made before the film went into release are forever lost, but the cuts made for television have been restored in the Alpha release, and while the film and sound quality aren't particularly great it's just as well to recall that they probably weren't all that good to begin with.

Now, this is one of those movies that you'll either find incredibly dull or wildly hilarious, depending on your point of view, so it is very hard to give a recommendation. But I'll say this: if your tastes run to the likes of Ed Wood or Russ Meyers, you need to snap this one up and now! Four stars for its cheesy-bizarreness alone! GFT, Amazon Reviewer

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