The Ape Man (1943)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Ape Man Photos

Movie Info

This paltry Monogram quickie stars Bela Lugosi as standard-issue mad scientist Dr. Brewster, who performs his diabolical experiments in a secret underground laboratory. His latest creation is a spinal serum derived from the synaptic fluid of a gorilla (exact medical purpose unknown), which he begins testing on himself. To his dismay, he begins to develop ape-like traits and a decidedly hirsute appearance, prompting him to find some way of reversing the serum's effects. Not surprisingly, it turns out the necessary counter-agent is largely based on human spinal fluid, which Brewster procures from several unwilling donors with the help of his own simian assassin. Lugosi fans will undoubtedly find this uncomfortable viewing, as the noble Hungarian film star is humiliated at every turn. The closing punchline suggests the producers didn't have a particularly high opinion of their own project either. Not to be confused with the remarkably similar (and similarly awful) Monogram project The Ape, which had thoroughly embarrassed another horror star, Boris Karloff, three years earlier.
Classics , Horror , Science Fiction & Fantasy
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Independent International Pictures Corp.

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Bela Lugosi
as Dr. James Brewster
Wallace Ford
as Jeff Carter
Louise Currie
as Billie Mason
Minerva Urecal
as Agatha Brewster
Henry Hall
as Dr. Randall
J. Farrell MacDonald
as Police Captain O'Brien
George Kirby
as Butler
Emil VanHorn
as The Ape
Jack Mulhall
as Reporter
Charles Jordan
as O'Toole
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Critic Reviews for The Ape Man

All Critics (4)

This is some family: A sister and a brother are a medium and a mad scientist, respectively.

Full Review… | May 24, 2005

One of Lugosi's Monogram cheapies; not very good, silly and campy.

February 13, 2003
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)

Classically bad, so bizarre it's good.

August 21, 2002
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Quote not available.

July 31, 2005

Audience Reviews for The Ape Man

Don't get me wrong this is a bad movie. A bad bad bad movie, but there's something about it that's strangely appealing. (Not a recommendation)

Chuck  Norris
Chuck Norris

Nothing too interesting. Bela Lugosi looked more like a werewolf than an apeman, and there's a lot of random scenes and boring murders. There's not really anything new to this film.

Wes Shad
Wes Shad

This is downright awful. Lugosi plays the whole movie hunched over like a gorilla, doing the worst acting I've seen from the man (and he doesn't have much depth to begin with from what I've seen); the man in the gorilla suit (Littlefield) does a poor job of playing an ape; and there is not enough direction to bring together the sparse story and the ridiculous characters and wrap it into a coherent whole.

Don Schick
Don Schick

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