The Four Skulls of Jonathan Drake (1959)

Approved  |   |  Horror, Mystery  |  13 November 1959 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 497 users  
Reviews: 35 user | 12 critic

Jonathan Drake, while attending his brother's funeral, is shocked to find the head of the deceased is missing. When his brother's skull shows up later in a locked cabinet, Drake realizes an... See full summary »


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Complete credited cast:
Jonathan Drake
Valerie French ...
Alison Drake
Grant Richards ...
Police Lt. Jeff Rowan
Dr. Emil Zurich
Lumsden Hare ...
Frank Gerstle ...
Lee Coulter
Paul Wexler ...
Howard Wendell ...
Dr. George Bradford
Kenneth Drake


Jonathan Drake, while attending his brother's funeral, is shocked to find the head of the deceased is missing. When his brother's skull shows up later in a locked cabinet, Drake realizes an ancient curse placed upon his grandfather by a tribe of South American Jivaro Indians is still in effect and that he himself is the probable next victim. That night he is awakened by the approach of an Indian, his lips sewed together with string, and wielding a curare-tipped bamboo knife. Written by Doug Sederberg <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A Terrifying Case of SKULL-DUGGERY! See more »


Horror | Mystery


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

13 November 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die vier Schädel des Jonathan Drake  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


In addition to his credited work as make-up artist, Charles Gemora also designed and sculpted the shrunken heads. See more »


During the fight between Zutai and Jeff, the "blade" of Zutai's weapon is rubber, and keeps wobbling around, and bends when it brushes against anything. See more »


Featured in Svengoolie: The Four Skulls of Jonathan Drake (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

One scary movie for a 10 year old in 1960
28 November 2005 | by (the Pacific Northwest) – See all my reviews

The movie concerned the death of Jonathan's brother and the brother's missing head. Of course the fact that his head is missing isn't discovered until the funeral. Then the realization hits that the brother's death and decapitation is because of a curse put on their grandfather by a South American tribe he had cheated. At this point Jonathan considers there is a strong possibility that he is next. That thought occurs when he awakens in the middle of the night to discover a rather gruesome looking native, with his mouth sewn shut, standing over him with a long, sharp knife. Now he, family and friends must find a way to save his life. It's too bad most of you will never see this in the theater. (Eduard Franz and Henry Daniell were great actors!)

Seeing it again a few years ago (over 50), I could see all the fallacies and the real lack of anything to be afraid of, it was pretty phony in loads of places. And, compared to what the producers and directors put out today, it, also, was pretty tame. But one more thing I will say scary though it might have been then, now I consider it fun.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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