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Hell's Headquarters (1932)

Doctor Smith and his wife, Mary,depart a riverboat and are met by Phil Talbot. Phil informs Dr. Smith that Jessup, the only other white man in the village, has died while the doctor and his... See full summary »


Andrew L. Stone


Norton S. Parker (story) (as Morton S. Parker), Norton S. Parker (continuity) (as Morton S. Parker)


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Cast overview:
Jack Mulhall ... Ross King
Barbara Weeks ... Diane Cameron
Frank Mayo ... Phil Talbot
Phillips Smalley ... Mr. Cameron
Fred Parker ... Dr. Smith
Everett Brown ... Kuba


Doctor Smith and his wife, Mary,depart a riverboat and are met by Phil Talbot. Phil informs Dr. Smith that Jessup, the only other white man in the village, has died while the doctor and his wife were off on a two-day holiday. Unknown to Smith, Jessup and his partner, Ross King, had a large cache of ivory tusks in the jungle, and he had told Phil about it. Meanwhile, Mary Smith has decided to steam-boat down the Congo River to Capetown for an extended holiday. Kuba, King's gun-bearer, asks Smith to write a letter to King, currently residing at a New York City Explorer's Club, and advise him that his partner has died. Talbot sends a letter to his stateside sweetheart, Diane Cameron, and her father, asking them to come to Africa and join him on an ivory-treasure expedition, and replenish their family-fortune lost in the recent stock-market crash. What Mr. Cameron and Diane don't know about Talbot is that his years in Africa have unhinged him. On the voyage over, Diane meets Ross,and they... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

ivory | partner | letter | doctor | voyage | See All (120) »


A Story of Ivory Hunting in the Congo


Drama | Mystery | Romance


Not Rated | See all certifications »






Release Date:

15 April 1932 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

White Ivory See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This film's earliest documented telecasts took place in New York City Wednesday 16 August 1950 on Stardust Theatre on WATV (Channel 13) and again Wednesday 25 October 1950 on Starlit Playhouse on WOR (Channel 9), and in Los Angeles Tuesday 5 September 1950 on Movie Gems on KTTV (Channel 11). See more »

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User Reviews

Yet another bad jungle film.
16 October 2012 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

During the 1930s and 40s, Hollywood must have made a bazillion jungle films. And, aside from a few (such as the Johnny Weismuller 'Tarzan' films), most were just terrible--consisting of super-low production values, lots of stock footage to pad the film and bad acting. In this sense, "Hell's Headquarters" is yet another film in this grand tradition! When "Hell's Headquarters" began, the first thing I noticed was just how bad the acting was. Actor after actor delivered their lines like dyslexics reading cue cards! It was pretty funny, actually--and occasionally worse than you'd find in Ed Wood's "Plan 9 From Outer Space". As for the story, a man and his daughter agree to finance an expedition to get ivory in Africa. There are two problems--the money they use is the last of their once-substantial fortune and the man they entrust it to is pure evil. He's already murdered one guy to learn the secret location for the ivory--and he seems very ready and willing to do it again. This gets to one of the biggest problems with the film's plot--Phil is so obviously evil you wonder how the man and daughter don't recognize it immediately. He does a lousy job of hiding it and spends most of his time beating natives and acting nasty in a variety of other ways. Now this isn't completely dull, as the film occasionally manages to be interesting--such as the scene where the man breaks his ropes by putting his hands over the fire as well as the grisly ending. But, most of it is just one-dimensional and silly. While not a horrible film, it certainly isn't good by any standard.

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