A promotional film poster for "Invisible Ghost."
|Directed by||Joseph H. Lewis|
|Based on||story by Helen and Al Martin|
Polly Ann Young
Marcel Le Picard
|Edited by||Robert Golden|
Banner Pictures Corporation
|Distributed by||Astor Pictures Corporation|
Invisible Ghost is a 1941 American horror film starring Bela Lugosi and directed by Joseph H. Lewis. It was the first of the nine movies interpreted by Bela Lugosi for Sam Katzman at Monogram Pictures.
Charles Kessler (Bela Lugosi) is plagued by homicidal urges. His wife (Betty Compson), who had left him for another man, gets into a car accident that leaves her brain damaged and is kept in a cellar in secret, by Kessler's gardener. When an innocent man is executed for a murder Kessler committed in the house, his twin brother visits and tries to unravel the mystery. He discovers that Kessler is the killer and doesn't know it. His brother subdues him and contacts the police, who arrest Kessler.
- Bela Lugosi - Dr. Charles Kessler
- Polly Ann Young - Virginia Kessler
- John McGuire - Ralph Dickson and Paul Dickson
- Clarence Muse - Evans the Butler
- Terry Walker - Cecile Mannix
- Betty Compson - Mrs. Kessler
- Ernie Adams - Jules Mason
- George Pembroke - Police Lieutenant Williams
- Ottola Nesmith - Mrs. Mason (as Ollola Nesmith)
- Fred Kelsey - Detective Ryan
- Jack Mulhall - Detective Tim
Filming took place from 20 March to April 1941. As soon as the film was completed it was announced Lugosi and Katzman would make two more films together; they eventually wound up making nine in all.
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The Los Angeles Times said the film was "head and shoulders above the average horror picture. It's superiority is based on the fact that spine-tickling qualities stem from a psychopathic and psychological situation rather than a purely physical one, imparting a Poe-ish flavour... Lugosi is, of course, superb in his work, being master of all the horror tricks but never overdoing them". Author and film critic Leonard Maltin awarded the film two out of a possible four stars, calling it "Better written and directed than most of Bela's 1940's cheapies, but still a far-cry from Dracula".
- Gary D. Rhodes, "A House Where Anything Can Happen and Usually Does", The Films of Joseph H Lewis p 81-97
- Of Local Origin New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 14 Mar 1941: 17.
- Lugosi-Katzman Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 02 May 1941: 29.
- Tom Weaver, Poverty Row Horrors! Mongram, PRC and Republic Horror Films of the Forties, 1993 p 26-35
- Lugosi Opus Real Thriller G K. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 12 Apr 1941: A9
- Leonard Maltin (2015). Classic Movie Guide: From the Silent Era Through 1965. Penguin Publishing Group. p. 331. ISBN 978-0-14-751682-4.
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