The Mysterious Doctor (1943)





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The Mysterious Doctor Photos

Movie Info

A Warner Bros. attempt to ape the success of the Universal horror films, The Mysterious Doctor is a moody little piece centering around a series of decapitations. These outrages are being committed in a cloistered English village, and the perpetrator is supposedly a legendary headless ghost. For a while, suspicion falls upon the village idiot (Matt Willis), but the true culprit is mad doctor John Loder, who is using the "ghost" legend to cover up his Nazi activities. Eleanor Parker, a recent Warners contractee, is around to scream and look terrified. Mysterious Doctor wraps everything up in 57 minutes.
Classics , Drama , Horror , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Warner Bros.


John Loder
as Sir Henry Leland
Eleanor Parker
as Letty Carstairs
Bruce Lester
as Lt. Christopher Hilton
Lester Matthews
as Dr. Frederick Holmes
Forrester Harvey
as Hugh Penhryn
Matt Willis
as Bart Raymond
Art Foster
as Saul Bevans
Clyde Cook
as Herbert
David Clyde
as Tom Andrews
Harold De Becker
as The Peddler
Frank Mayo
as Simon Tewksbury
Hank Mann
as Roger
William Hopper
as Orderly
Jack Mower
as Watson
Crauford Kent
as The Commandant
Leo White
as Headless man
Bruce Lister
as Lt. Christopher Hilton
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Critic Reviews for The Mysterious Doctor

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Audience Reviews for The Mysterious Doctor

The Mysterious Doctor (Benjamin Stoloff, 1943) Ultra-prolific potboiler director Stoloff, probably best known for his 1932 adaptation of Destry Rides Again, turned in this war film gussied up like a ghost story towards the end of his career (he would direct five more pictures between now and 1950, then disappear until 1959, when he began to direct episodes to the TV series Home Run Derby; this continued until his death in 1960. Despite the obvious implication of the dates, I can find no information on whether Stoloff was blacklisted.), an interesting, if somewhat predictable, little tale of a tin mine haunted by a headless ghost and a traveler who may not be all he seems. Dr. Frederick Holmes (Lester Matthews, much-uncredited character actor you might recognize from Now, Voyager or The Far Horizons) wanders out of the mist one night and begs a ride to town from a passing carriage. While he and the driver are on their way, he reveals he's on a walking tour of the area. When he gets to the town, he finds it rather provincial, its inhabitants suspicious of outsiders; there's a war going on, after all, and a parachutist was seen coming down near where the doctor appeared on the moor. They may be right to be suspicious; the doctor may not be all he seems to be... It's not a bad little movie (and âlittleâ? is the operative word here, with a running time of fifty-seven minutes). Technically, it's quite nicely done, but everything else-- the script, the predictability of the plot, the clumsiness of the big reveal (that requires an âah, Constance, this is how I did it!â? explanation scene), all contribute to the movie still being a pretty forgettable experience. Still, if you run across it on late-night television or in a dark corner of your video store, it's certainly not a bad way to spend an hour; you could do a great deal worse. ***

Robert Beveridge
Robert Beveridge

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