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Fog Island (1945) starring George Zucco, Lionel Atwill, Veda Ann Borg

Fog Island

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Fog Island (1945) starring George Zucco, Lionel Atwill, Jerome Cowan

Fog Island – a man wrongly sent to prison plans a trap the people who framed him, and find out which were guilty. Very dangerous people …

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Topper Returns (1941), starring Joan Blondell, Roland Young, Carole Landis, Billie Burke, George Zucco, Eddie "Rochester" Anderson

Topper Returns

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Topper Returns (1941), starring Joan Blondell, Roland Young, Carole Landis, Billie Burke, George Zucco, Eddie “Rochester” Anderson

Synopsis of Topper Returns

Topper Returns is possibly the best of the Topper trilogy. Thanks to the sassy presence of Joan Blondell. Hollywood’s favorite wisecracker who plays Gail Richards. She’s a woman accidentally murdered while staying at the home of her friend, Ann Carrington (Carole Landis). Enlisting the help of Cosmo Topper (Roland Young) Gail’s ghost sets out to find her killer.

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The Mummy's Ghost (1944) starring Lon Chaney Jr. and John Carradine

The Mummy’s Ghost [1944]

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The Mummy’s Ghost (1944) starring Lon Chaney Jr., John Carradine

Synopsis

In The Mummy’s Ghost, Kharis (Lon Chaney Jr.) returns, still searching for his lost love, Princess Ananka. When her mummified body disappears, he realizes that she’s been reincarnated. And he will find her …

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Lured, starring Lucille BallLured (1947) starring Lucille Ball, George Sanders, Boris Karloff, Charles Coburn, Sir Cedric Hardwicke

Lured, starring Lucille Ball, George Sanders, Boris Karloff

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Lured (1947) starring Lucille Ball, George Sanders, Boris Karloff, Charles Coburn, Sir Cedric Hardwicke

Synopsis of Lured

A serial killer in London is murdering young women whom he meets through the personal columns of newspapers. He announces each of his murders to the police by sending them a cryptic poem. After a dancer disappears, the police enlist her American friend to answer advertisements in the personal columns and so lure the killer.

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The Mad Monster (1942), starring George Zucco, Glenn Strange, Ann Nagel, Johnny Downs

The Mad Monster

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The Mad Monster (1942), starring George Zucco, Glenn Strange, Ann Nagel, Johnny Downs

Synopsis of The Mad Monster

In The Mad Monster, Dr. Cameron (George Zucco) has succeeded in his experiments with a serum which will turn a man into a wolf-like monster and is ready to avenge himself on the men who caused his professional failure. He uses it on his gardener Petro (Glenn Strange) and one after the other is killed by his creation. His daughter, Lenora (Anne Nagel), grows suspicious and confides with newspaper reporter Tom Gregory (Johnny Downs).

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House of Frankenstein (1944), starring Boris Karloff, John Carradine, Lon Chaney Jr., J. Carrol Naish, Glenn Strange, Lionel Atwill, Anne Gwynne, Peter Coe

House of Frankenstein [monster movie]

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House of Frankenstein (1944), starring Boris Karloff, John Carradine, Lon Chaney Jr., J. Carrol Naish, Glenn Strange, Lionel Atwill, Anne Gwynne, Peter Coe

Synopsis of House of Frankenstein

Larry Talbot just wants to die, Ilonka just wants him to love her

House of Frankenstein is the first of the Universal Studios monster mashes.  In short, mad scientist Niemann and “friend Daniel” his hunchback assistant escape prison and enact a series of revenges on the people who had him imprisoned.  They murder a proprietor of a travelling show of horrors, impersonate him and revive his corpse of Dracula.  Dracula succeeds in the first part of the revenge scheme, but Niemann abandons him to be destroyed in the sunlight.  Niemann then travels to the ruins of Frankenstein’s castle.  He hopes to recover the dead doctor’s secrets, but instead recovers both the Wolf Man and Frankenstein’s monster.  He revives them both, but a romantic triangle unravels the plot.

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The Mad Ghoul (1943) starring Turhan Bey, Evelyn Ankers, David Bruce, George Zucco

The Mad Ghoul

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The Mad Ghoul (1943) starring Turhan Bey, Evelyn Ankers, David Bruce, George Zucco

The Mad Ghoul, frankly, is an above-average monster movie, starring some of the recognizable actors from the genre in the 1940’s.  In short, Dr. Alfred Morris (George Zucco) is a college professor and researcher, who has uncovered and recreated a poisonous gas first used by ancient Mayans, used to create “death in life” – robbing the victims of their own will, similar to the classic zombie movies of the 1930’s and 1940’s.  He hires a medical student named Ted Allison (David Bruce), since he needs his surgical skills for the grisly “cure” to the poison — a fresh heart is a crucial ingredient. The original experiment on a monkey seems successful — at first.

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The Monster and the Girl (1941) starring George Zucco, Ellen Drew, Phillip Terry, Robert Paige, Paul Lukas

The Monster and the Girl

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The Monster and the Girl (1941) starring George Zucco, Ellen Drew, Phillip Terry, Robert Paige, Paul Lukas

The Monster and the Girl (1941) starring George Zucco, Ellen Drew, Phillip Terry, Robert Paige, Paul Lukas

The Monster and the Girl is a very good “B” movie, well acted, with a cast that the audience cares about. It begins as a courtroom drama, only to pivot to a horror movie. It begins by telling the story of a small town girl named Susan Webster (Ellen Drew) who yearns for the sights and sounds of the big city.  Over the objections of her protective brother, Scot (Phillip Terry). What Susan finds in New York isn’t what she bargained for, as she is romanced by smooth talking Larry Reid (Robert Paige) who’s intentions are not as sincere as they first seem. Going through a sham marriage to Larry, she is forced into a prostitution ring run by gangster W. S. Bruhl (Paul Lukas).

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The Mummy's Hand movie poster

The Mummy’s Hand

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The Mummy’s Hand  (1940) starring Dick Foran, Wallace Ford, Peggy Moran

If there’s one deadly sin committed by  The Mummy’s Hand, it’s that it’s too slow–and I’m not talking about the shambling movement of Kharis the living mummy.   The titular mummy doesn’t make his first appearance until an hour into the movie, which has spent far too long in setting the scene.   For instance, handsome, young archaeologist Steve Banning (Dick Foran) is stuck in Egypt. Without the funds to pursue his archeological dig.   And his friend Babe Jensen (Wallace Ford) is along as comic relief.

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