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The Thing with Two Heads (1972)

PG | | Comedy, Sci-Fi | 19 July 1972 (USA)
Doctors are forced to transplant the head of a dying, racist surgeon onto the body of a black death row inmate.

Director:

Lee Frost

Writers:

Lee Frost (screenplay), Wes Bishop (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ray Milland ... Maxwell Kirshner
Roosevelt Grier ... Jack Moss (as 'Rosey' Grier)
Don Marshall ... Dr. Fred Williams
Roger Perry ... Dr. Philip Desmond
Chelsea Brown ... Lila
Kathrine Baumann ... Patricia (as Kathy Baumann)
John Dullaghan ... Thomas
John Bliss ... Donald
Bruce Kimball Bruce Kimball ... Police Lieutenant
Jane Kellem Jane Kellem ... Miss Mullen
Lee Frost Lee Frost ... Sergeant Hacker
Wes Bishop Wes Bishop ... Dr. Smith
Roger Gentry Roger Gentry ... Police Sergeant
Britt Nilsson Britt Nilsson ... Nurse
Rick Baker ... Gorilla
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Storyline

A rich but racist man is dying and hatches an elaborate scheme for transplanting his head onto another man's body. His health deteriorates rapidly, and doctors are forced to transplant his head onto the only available candidate: a black man from death row. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They share the same body... but hate each other's guts! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 July 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Beast with Two Heads See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The police insignia on the squad cars and shoulder patches read "Akersfield" instead of "Bakersfield". See more »

Quotes

Jack Moss: It's all right, honey, I'm not gonna hurt you.
Lila: You get into more shit...
See more »

Connections

Featured in Cinemacabre TV Trailers (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Truly Happy
Composed by Jerry Peters, Produced by Jerry Butler
Performed by The Sylvers (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Would you like to have Ray Milland nibbling on your ear?
20 December 2009 | by CoventrySee all my reviews

In a documentary I recently watched called "The 50 Worst Movies Ever Made", this exploitation curiosity is proudly ranked #3, but even though it's a generally dim-witted and inept production, I cannot possibly refer to it as one of the worst movies ever. It offers incredible amounts of fun, laughter, disbelief and astonishment and the film is unquestionably a delight for every cinema fanatic who's remotely into bizarre horror stuff. Veteran actor Ray Milland stars as the genius, but slightly power mad, greedy and discriminating scientist who managed to sew an extra head onto a gorilla's torso without killing any of them. So now, Dr. Maxwell Kirshner thinks he masters the entire transplantation business and intends to use the method on himself. It's understandable why Maxwell is in a hurry, seeing that an aggressive type of cancer is slowly rotting his entire body from the inside out. So, basically, he worked out the whole biggest breakthrough in the history of medical science only to save his own ass! The plan now is to recruit a convict on death row, transplant the Dr.'s head on his body and wait approximately 30 days for the head to adapt to its new host before removing the convict's original head. Tiny little problem, however, the only available prisoner on death row is black and the old chauvinist doctor is quite racist. The con, Jack Moss, is also innocent of the crime he's on death row for and intends to use the additional 30 days to prove this, regardless of the fact there's the cranky head of an old racist scientist breathing down his ear. "The Thing With Two Heads" is a clumsy mad scientist movie with heavy ambitions towards Blaxploitation cinema. Apart from the obvious thematic plot of a stereotypical black tough guy sharing the body with a stereotypical white racist, there's also the extremely groovy soundtrack. The sight of the two-headed person – I have no idea why they refer to him as "things" since he's clearly a person – is just plain laughable. The plot subsequently evolves into a strange type of action movie with Jack Moss escaping from the operating table to prove his innocence. There's a seemingly endless motorcycle race, with numerous police vehicles (fourteen to be exact) getting wrecked and loads of crazy stunt work to admire. It's quite fun and all, at least for a minute or three, but surely they could have come up with something better than a 20 minute chase? Especially with this film's original concept? Either way, in spite of all its shortcomings and missed potential, "The Thing with Two Heads" is an interesting cult product from the early 70's and definitely recommended to tolerant fans of the genre.


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