Film (1944). Republic. Produced and directed by George Sherman. Written by Dane Lussier, Frederick Kohner, based on Donovan's Brain (1943) by Curt Siodmak. Cast includes Richard Arlen, Sidney Blackmer, Vera Ralston and Erich von Stroheim. 86 minutes. Black and white.
This is the first of the three film versions of Siodmak's novel; the others are Donovan's Brain (1953) and Vengeance (1963; vt The Brain). Financial wizard W H Donovan is killed when his plane crashes in the desert. An obsessive Scientist (von Stroheim), whose laboratory is nearby, removes the undamaged brain and keeps it alive in a glass tank (see Brain in a Box), but it gradually takes over the minds of those around it, forcing them to commit a series of evil deeds. The photography is atmospheric, but the film overall is routine Gothic melodrama. [JB/PN]
see also: Cinema.
Previous versions of this entry