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The Brain That Wouldn’t Die

Somewhere on the spectrum between Frankenstein and Re-Animator, you’ll find today’s Trillion Dollar Movie: The Brain That Wouldn’t Die. But it’s a sleazier, low-budget example of this horror genre, shot on the cuff in 1959 and finally released in 1962 after writer-director Joseph Green secured a distribution deal.

Jason Evers, billed here as Herb Evers and later seen in Escape from Planet of the Apes, plays a mad scientist, Dr. Bill Cortner, who engages in closeted transplant experiments, involving grafted human body parts, in a secret laboratory. Good thing, too, because his girlfriend Jan (Virginia Leith) will be dismembered in a hideous car accident. Dr. Bill rescues her decapitated head, using a magical serum to keep her alive. Now, he has 48 hours to locate a body so she can be fully re-animated.

To the accompaniment of a wailing saxophone, his search takes him to the Moulin Rouge strip club, the Miss Body Beautiful contest and, ultimately, to the artist studio where a disfigured, man-hating model poses for a gaggle of leering cameramen. The women he’s stalking are quite cheeky, one saying, “Who’s to tell me to blow if I don’t want to?” Meanwhile, Jan is back at the lab, plotting her revenge with a cone-headed monster, resembling Sloth from The Goonies, mistakenly created by one of Dr. Bill’s earlier experiments that went awry.  The dialogue is priceless as Jan tells the creature: “I’m only a head, and you’re whatever you are, but together, we’re strong.”

It might be low-budget, but given the never-ending march of inflation, who can argue with it being a Trillion ($) Movie? Return again next Friday for the next installment in our popular series, rescuing full-length and uncut vintage titles from the vaults of the Internet.

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One thought on “The Brain That Wouldn’t Die

  1. Great post. Very helpful. Thanks for the info.

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