The Brain That Wouldn't Die (1961)

Genres - Horror, Comedy  |   Sub-Genres - Psychological Sci-Fi, Horror Comedy  |   Release Date - Aug 10, 1962 (USA)  |   Run Time - 81 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Hokey, overwrought, and poorly paced, this venerable creature feature still commands a sizable following on the basis of its campy, low-grade special effects, its T&A exploitation, and its many pseudo-philosophical soliloquies. Virginia Leith gives a spiteful, glamorous performance that's limited to the neck up for most of the film. God only knows how someone without a windpipe would be able to talk, but oh, how she does. Swathed in bandages, soaking in a tray of serum, she hisses epithets and makes pronouncements about Nature, Injustice, and Evil while co-star Jason Evers trawls the city's houses of ill repute looking for a babe with a killer enough bod to provide his sweetie-pie with a new lease on life. A fixture of Saturday-afternoon horror matinees, the film often has its more flimsily clothed moments excised on TV. Seen complete on video or DVD, the picture's horror elements may seem like just an excuse to show scantily clad ladies of the night showing off their wares and getting into catfights. The finale does, however, provide some fairly effective monster makeup and some lurid bits of grisly mayhem. For some viewers, the most horrifying moment may come when Evers tapes Leith's mouth shut to keep her from talking. Never fear, feminists -- the blowhard doctor gets what's coming to him, and this collection of macabre male fantasies ends with the sinister laughter of its put-upon title character.