The Man They Could Not Hang
|The Man They Could Not Hang|
Poster for the film "The Man They Could Not Hang"
|Directed by||Nick Grinde|
|Produced by||Wallace MacDonald|
|Written by||Karl Brown
George Wallace Syre
Leslie T. White
|Cinematography||Benjamin H. Kline|
|Edited by||William A. Lyon|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
| August 17, 1939
November 1947 (rerelease)
The Man They Could Not Hang is a (1939) low-budget horror film produced by Columbia Pictures, directed by Nick Grinde, and starring Boris Karloff as Dr. Henryk Savaard. The supporting cast features Lorna Gray and Ann Doran.
Dr. Savaard is obsessed with bringing the dead back to life. A young medical student offers his services to him, but before he can bring him back to life, Savaard is arrested, convicted, and sentenced to hang. He vows revenge on the judge and the jury before his hanging. His assistant claims his body and revives him by using his technique. The vengeful Savaard goes on a killing spree.
The fictional heart & lung machine prop presented an idea that was strictly sci-fi at the time, but later the central idea became reality as "Open Heart Surgery," later renamed "On-Pump" surgery due to the development of microsurgery that does not require stopping the heart; "On Pump" requires heart stoppage, then hook up to the pump, then operate on the repairs, then re-connect and revive the patient, exactly as presented in the basic theory presented by the film.
- Boris Karloff - Dr. Henryk Savaard
- Lorna Gray - Janet Savaard
- Robert Wilcox - Scoop Foley
- Roger Pryor - Dist. Atty. Drake
- Don Beddoe - Police Lt. Shane
- Ann Doran - Betty Crawford
- Joe De Stefani - Dr. Stoddard
- Charles Trowbridge - Judge Bowman
- Byron Foulger - Lang
- Dick Curtis - Clifford Kearney
- James Craig - Watkins
- John Tyrrell - Sutton
- Stephen Jacobs, Boris Karloff: More Than a Monster, Tomohawk Press 2011 p 246-247
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