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Donovan's Brain (1953)

Approved | | Sci-Fi, Horror | 30 September 1953 (USA)
Three scientists unlawfully remove the still living brain of a dead tycoon and experiment with it but the evil brain begins to telepathically control the lead scientist.

Director:

Felix E. Feist (as Felix Feist)

Writers:

Curt Siodmak (novel), Hugh Brooke (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Lew Ayres ... Dr. Patrick J. Cory
Gene Evans ... Dr. Frank Schratt
Nancy Reagan ... Janice Cory (as Nancy Davis)
Steve Brodie ... Herbie Yocum
Tom Powers ... Donovan's Washington Advisor
Lisa Howard ... Chloe Donovan (as Lisa K. Howard)
James Anderson ... Chief Tuttle (as Kyle James)
Victor Sutherland Victor Sutherland ... Nathaniel Fuller
Michael Colgan Michael Colgan ... Tom Donovan
Peter Adams Peter Adams ... Mr. Webster
Harlan Warde ... Treasury Agent Brooke
Shimen Ruskin ... Tailor
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Storyline

Dr. Patrick "Pat" J. Cory is researching brains with his assistant and friend Dr. Frank Schratt and his wife Janice Cory through experiments with monkeys in a laboratory in his house. When an airplane crashes nearby his house, there is only one near-death survivor, the millionaire Warren H. Donovan that is brought still alive to his care. However Donovan dies and Dr. Cory decides to use his brain in his experiment keeping it alive in a tank. Pat, Schratt and Janice research about the life of Donovan and they discover that he was a ruthless and evil man. Soon Donovan's brain imposes his personality to Dr. Cory and possesses him to get rid of his enemies and to live again in his body. Schratt and Janice sees the transformation of Dr. Cory and plan to destroy the brain. Will they succeed in their intent? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A dead man's brain in a hidden laboratory told him to ... kill ... kill ... kill ... kill ... kill ...

Genres:

Sci-Fi | Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM Studios [United States]

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 September 1953 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Creierul lui Donovan See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Dowling Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Female lead Nancy Davis was, of course, Mrs. Ronald Reagan. See more »

Goofs

When the bank manager picks up the stack of bills to count them, he leaves a bill on the desk. He counts the rest and hands them to Dr. Cory. Neither man notices the bill left behind. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Patrick J. Cory: [after Cory wakes Scratt up from a drunken stupor] My dear Dr. Schratt, you sober up with more
[pauses and shrugs]
Dr. Patrick J. Cory: grace than anyone I ever saw. You're terrific. C'mon, let's go.
Dr. Frank Schratt: Are you kidding?
[He hold out his shaking hand]
Dr. Frank Schratt: . Look! Nope.
Dr. Patrick J. Cory: Frank, don't let me down.
Dr. Frank Schratt: What's more useless than a surgeon with a hangover? I'm a drunken zero.! I pass!
Dr. Patrick J. Cory: No, you don't. I'd rather have you do a corneal transplant for me drunk than anyone else sober.
[Pulls him by the arm]
[...]
See more »

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User Reviews

Silly but entertaining mind control yarn. Great fun!
23 January 2003 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

Veteran actor Lew Ayres, best known to many old movie buffs as 'Dr Kildare', plays Cory, a scientist experimenting with monkey's brains, seeing if it is possible for them to exist outside the body. He is assisted in his innovative work by his devoted wife Janice (the future Nancy "Just Say No" Reagan), and his alcoholic surgeon sidekick Schratt ('Shock Corridor's Gene Evans, in the film's best performance). A plane crashes near their laboratory, and the only survivor is taken there as it isn't thought he will live long enough to make it to the nearest hospital. Unable to save the man, Cory decides to secretly preserve the brain. The man is soon revealed to be ruthless multi-millionaire businessman Donovan. Cory's gamble pays off and the brain not only survives, but thrives. As it does it begins to control Cory, making him into a slave. Donovan's brain wants to continue to use his business empire for world domination, and will kill anyone who stands in his way. Cory's wife and colleague are helpless to stop what is going on. Now, there is a strong element of silliness throughout this thriller. The brain actually grows larger and pulses, and Ayers does the whole "must... stop....brain...before...it's...too...late' routine which quite possibly taught William Shatner a thing or two. But if enter into the spirit of the thing, this is one hell of an entertaining b-grade science fiction yarn, and lots of fun. For a different approach to the same Siodmak source material check out the early sixties mystery movie 'The Brain' starring Peter van Eyck.


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