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Donovan's Brain (1953)

Approved | | Sci-Fi, Horror | 30 September 1953 (USA)
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 ... See full summary »

Director:

(as Felix Feist)

Writers:

(novel), (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Dr. Patrick J. Cory
... Dr. Frank Schratt
... Janice Cory (as Nancy Davis)
... Herbie Yocum
... Donovan's Washington Advisor
Lisa Howard ... Chloe Donovan (as Lisa K. Howard)
... Chief Tuttle (as Kyle James)
Victor Sutherland ... Nathaniel Fuller
Michael Colgan ... Tom Donovan
Peter Adams ... Mr. Webster
... 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

Genres:

Sci-Fi | Horror

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM Studios [United States]

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 September 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Donovans Hirn  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The sign on the door of the attorney's office includes a "B. Chapman, CPA." Ben Chapman was the film's production supervisor. See more »

Goofs

The size of the brain in the tank keeps abruptly changing size, within the same scene. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Patrick J. Cory: Perhaps I'll cure Frank and every other alcoholic if I can solve the mystery of Donovan's Brain. I think it's a matter of chemistry how the brain thinks. The problem is to find out what chemical combinations are responsible for success... failure... happiness... misery.
Janice Cory: Sounds impossible.
Dr. Patrick J. Cory: But it is not. It can't be. There has to be a way.
See more »

Connections

Remake of The Lady and the Monster (1944) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Tautly efficient black & white thriller from yesteryear.
14 March 2016 | by See all my reviews

Fun stuff. A wicked little thriller from the early 1950's, palpably flavored with some early Sci-Fi elements. These "Sci-Fi" elements, are primarily due to the doctors (quite humble) laboratory. And because of the consistently good (occasionally great) acting and steady direction, the movie moves along at a good pace and proves to be very entertaining for such a low-budget production. Not all good movies cost mega-bucks to make and "Donovan's Brain" is a fine example of that. Like several reviewers have stated before me, this is the best film adaption of the famous Curt Siodmak novel (in contrast to the laughably dismal, MST3K-panned "The Brain That Wouldn't Die"). By watching this movie, it's quite obvious that it came out of the same decade that gave light to The Twilight Zone; as I found the film to play out much like a long-play episode of that show. The film is tautly put together and well-acted, the cast (which includes a young-ish Nancy Davis/Reagan) and crew did a lot with a little, in creating a highly entertaining psychological/sci-fi thriller. Certainly somewhat dated, but in a most charming way. Take note of those great, highly excitable sound effects coming from the professor's laboratory - very fun sounds. Perfect viewing on a dismal rainy afternoon (or night).

On a morbid sidenote, by sheer coincidence, I happened to see "Donovan's Brain" for the first time, on the very same day that Nancy Reagan was put in the ground. Like I said a bit on the morbid side.


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