Dr. Lynn Harper, psychologist, has been called out to the old Ingston Mansion, a dark and mysterious place with a very bad reputation, in order to make an assessment of the sanity of Margaret Ingston, daughter of patriarch Kurt Ingston. She claims to be sane, but she is clearly very disturbed; we can't be certain, although the doctor gives her a clean bill of health. But then Dick Baldwin shows up on the scene, just when Dr. Lynne has been receiving thinly veiled threats from the inhabitants of the house. He's our hero. Three medical doctors have been invited out to the mansion as well, Dr. Timmons, Dr. Phipps and the sleazy Dr. King (Lionel Atwill). One by one the doctors are mysteriously murdered. Dick Baldwin must figure out who is doing the killings, and he must do so before whoever it is can kill his new love interest, Dr. Lynne Harper. But the only one he can trust is Kurt Ingston himself, since Ingston has no legs and can't have perpetrated these murders. Is it sinister Rolf, ...Written by
At the end of the movie, the miniature of the burning mansion shown is identical to the miniature of the burning castle shown at the climax of The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942). See more »
[dramatic license] When one of the doctors is about to be killed, the killer's shadow on the wall becomes larger as he approaches. Of course, this means that the killer is actually moving closer to the light, and therefore, away from his victim. See more »
[reacting to Laurie's stopping the car by the side of a deserted road]
What's this for - as if I didn't know?
How is it dames always know what's on a guy's mind before he knows himself?
See more »
During the 1940's decade, Universal Pictures attempted to continue making horror films as they did the previous decade but did try to re-invent and package them a bit differently. Their financial success never mirrored that of its earliest successes, but films like The Night Monster showed that they still had the wherewithal to make classic, good horror yarns. This film is different from most Universal horror films for a number of reasons. Yes, Bela Lugois and Lionel Atwill are in the film. Lugosi is yet again wasted playing a butler - a role I sometimes tire of seeing him relegated to for a man of his considerable talents. Atwill does better as a pompous(can he be any other way?) doctor called with two other doctors to the home of the rich man their medicine was not able to save - he was now paralyzed from the waist down. Ralph Morgan plays the crippled man hosting the doctors, another doctor called in by his sister who believes she is crazy, a hypnotist, and a couple of other servants who act and expect better than their positions might suggest. Swirling around this is a series of murders, secretive looks and discussions, and the sighting by several of a monster that comes out at night. The Night Monster is really more of a mystery than a true horror film though the eerie, foggy atmosphere helps convey significant menace. The story isn't really particularly hard to figure out, but all the actors do a very good job playing their roles. Bela is really wasted unfortunately. He certainly could have been better utilized. Atwill as always is very, very smart and clever as he delivers his dialog. Frank Reicher, of King Kong fame, gives a nice turn as a fellow doctor caught in some terrible plot. While maybe not one of Universal's brightest stars, The Night Monster is a good, entertaining film.
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