The Man with Nine Lives (1940)

73 mins | Science fiction | 18 April 1940

Director:

Nick Grinde

Cinematographer:

Benjamin Kline

Editor:

Al Clark

Production Designer:

Lionel Banks

Production Company:

Columbia Pictures Corp.
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HISTORY

Working titles for this film were The Man Without a Face , The Man Who Would Not Die , and Behind the Door ... More Less

Working titles for this film were The Man Without a Face , The Man Who Would Not Die , and Behind the Door . More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
2 May 40
p. 3.
Film Daily
3 May 40
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Feb 40
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Feb 40
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Mar 40
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
3 May 40
p. 3.
Motion Picture Daily
6 May 40
p. 8.
Motion Picture Herald
4 May 40
p. 40.
New York Times
29 Apr 40
p. 12.
Variety
1 May 40
p. 18.
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Behind the Door
The Man Who Would Not Die
The Man Without a Face
Release Date:
18 April 1940
Production Date:
16 February--5 March 1940
Copyright Claimant:
Columbia Pictures Corp.
Copyright Date:
11 April 1940
Copyright Number:
LP9530
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
73
Length(in reels):
8
Country:
United States
PCA No:
6183
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Dr. Tim Mason, a brilliant young scientist, has been experimenting with cryogenics using theories propounded by Dr. Leon Kravaal, who mysteriously disappeared ten years earlier. When the press publicizes Tim's research, the public believes that he has discovered a cure for cancer, and the hospital in which he works is inundated with desperate pleas for help from cancer patients. As a result, the hospital sends the young doctor away until the publicity dies down. Accompanied by his fiancéé, nurse Judith Blair, Tim sets out for the Canadian border and hires a boat from Pete Daggett to take him to Crater Island, from which Kravaal disappeared. In Kravaal's home, Blair falls through the floor boards and discovers a secret passage that leads to a room with a temperature of one hundred degrees below zero. There Blair and Tim find Kravaal's frozen body. Once revived, Kravaal tells Tim that ten years before a party of four, including Sheriff Stanton, District Attorney John Hawthorne, Bob Adams and Dr. Bassett, came to arrest him because they believed he had killed Bob's uncle, Jasper Adams, and that during the arrest they all became trapped in the ice room. Tim and Kravaal begin to revive the four men, but when Bob Adams learns that he cannot collect on his uncle's life insurance because he has been legally dead for ten years, he destroys the delicate thawing formula. Kravaal then insists on using the three remaining frozen men in an experiment designed to reconstruct his success. After Kravaal shoots and kills Adams, Stanton is killed while attempting an escape, and Hawthorne and Dr. Bassett die from the effects ... +


Dr. Tim Mason, a brilliant young scientist, has been experimenting with cryogenics using theories propounded by Dr. Leon Kravaal, who mysteriously disappeared ten years earlier. When the press publicizes Tim's research, the public believes that he has discovered a cure for cancer, and the hospital in which he works is inundated with desperate pleas for help from cancer patients. As a result, the hospital sends the young doctor away until the publicity dies down. Accompanied by his fiancéé, nurse Judith Blair, Tim sets out for the Canadian border and hires a boat from Pete Daggett to take him to Crater Island, from which Kravaal disappeared. In Kravaal's home, Blair falls through the floor boards and discovers a secret passage that leads to a room with a temperature of one hundred degrees below zero. There Blair and Tim find Kravaal's frozen body. Once revived, Kravaal tells Tim that ten years before a party of four, including Sheriff Stanton, District Attorney John Hawthorne, Bob Adams and Dr. Bassett, came to arrest him because they believed he had killed Bob's uncle, Jasper Adams, and that during the arrest they all became trapped in the ice room. Tim and Kravaal begin to revive the four men, but when Bob Adams learns that he cannot collect on his uncle's life insurance because he has been legally dead for ten years, he destroys the delicate thawing formula. Kravaal then insists on using the three remaining frozen men in an experiment designed to reconstruct his success. After Kravaal shoots and kills Adams, Stanton is killed while attempting an escape, and Hawthorne and Dr. Bassett die from the effects of the experiments. Just as Kravaal is about to experiment on Judith, a search party led by Daggett arrives, and the demented scientist is killed. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.