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The Man with Nine Lives (1940)

Approved | | Mystery, Sci-Fi | 18 April 1940 (USA)
A medical researcher visits the deserted home of a pioneer in cryogenic science who disappeared 10 years earlier and finds him frozen in ice but still alive.

Director:

Nick Grinde (as Nick Grindé)

Writers:

Karl Brown (screen play), Harold Shumate (story)
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Popularity
721 ( 5,160)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Boris Karloff ... Dr. Leon Kravaal
Roger Pryor ... Dr. Tim Mason
Jo Ann Sayers ... Judith Blair
Stanley Brown ... Bob Adams
John Dilson ... John Hawthorne
Hal Taliaferro ... Sheriff Stanton
Byron Foulger ... Dr. Bassett
Charles Trowbridge ... Dr. Harvey
Ernie Adams ... Pete Daggett
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Storyline

Dr. Leon Kravaal develops a potential cure for cancer, which involves freezing the patient. But an experiment goes awry when authorities believe Kravaal has killed a patient. Kravaal freezes the officials, along with himself. Years later, they are discovered and revived in hopes that Kravaal can indeed complete his cure. But human greed and weakness compound to disrupt the project. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He kills in the name of science...Tombs of ice for the living...Chambers of horror for the dead! See more »

Genres:

Mystery | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Part of the Son of Shock package of 20 titles released to television in 1958, which followed the original Shock Theater release of 52 features one year earlier. This was also one of the 11 Columbia titles, the other 61 all being Universals. See more »

Goofs

In an early scene, the calendar date of "Saturday, March 16" is prominently displayed on Dr. Kravaal's wall. This is the actual 1940 calendar date, the year when the movie was filmed. However, later when the doctor and others are revived from a frozen sleep, they are informed that they have been frozen for ten years and that the year is now 1940. If that is the case, then the original calendar page on Dr. Kravaal's wall should have read "Saturday, March 15" which was the correct date in 1930. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
opening title card scroll: Added to the many miracles performed by modern science that have accounted for the saving of thousands upon thousands of human beings, comes its newest and most modern discovery - frozen therapy. ¶Estimates of how long frozen therapy can produce a state of suspended animation range from days to years. But on the fact that disease can be arrested - that life can be prolonged, by freezing human beings in ice, the medical world agrees. ¶In research hospitals today, men and women are ...
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User Reviews

Almost A Sleeper
5 October 2019 | by dougdoepkeSee all my reviews

It's an unusually intelligent storyline for a horror flick. In short, what are the ethical limits to scientific experimentation, even in finding a cure for cancer. Using what is now called "cryogenics", Dr. Kravaal (Karloff) crowds those limits while experimenting with a cancer cure on a remote island. Unfortunately, the promising experiments require live subjects who may not be so lucky. Dr. Mason (Pryor), one of the men trapped on the island with Kravaal, is torn by Kravaal's challenge to conventional ethics. So he's the one we sympathize with as we struggle with the same dilemma-- just how much can be sacrificed in finding a cure.

By no means does Karloff ham up his role. Instead he's perfect as a dedicated and distinguished medical scientist, more obsessed than evil. Except for actor Brown's overdone Adams, the rest of the cast also manages conflicted roles. Credit Columbia for the riveting sets-- for example, the cabin about to be eaten by dead plants, the many dingy underground scenes that really do look subterranean, the laboratory that really looks worked in. All in all, it's an unusually well mounted flick for its subject matter. If there's a problem, it's with the absence of a clear bad guy to heighten a sense of horror amid the dark surroundings. I don't get a sense of menace common to the genre. Instead, the 74-minutes is more like a "think piece", which all in all, may be more worthwhile than a good scare.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 April 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La isla de los resucitados See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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