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The Ape (1940 film)

The Ape
Theatrical release poster
Directed by William Nigh
Produced by William Nigh
Written by Adam Shirk
Curt Siodmak
Richard Carroll
Suggested from the play by
Adam Hull Shirk
Starring Boris Karloff
Maris Wrixon
Gene O'Donnell
Music by Edward J. Kay
Cinematography Harry Neumann
Edited by Russell F. Schoengarth
Distributed by Monogram Pictures Corporation
Release dates
  • September 30, 1940 (1940-09-30)
Running time
62 minutes
Country United States
Language English

The Ape is a 1940 American horror film made for Monogram Pictures, co-written by Curt Siodmak and starring Boris Karloff.[1]

Plot summary

Dr. Bernard Adrian is a kindly scientist who seeks to cure a young woman's polio. All he needs is spinal fluid from a human to complete the formula for his experimental serum. Meanwhile, a vicious circus ape has broken out of its cage, and is terrorizing the townspeople.

The Ape eventually breaks into Dr. Adrian's lab. The Doctor manages to kill it before any harm can come to himself. However, the spinal fluids he requires to perform his experiments have all been destroyed during the struggle between him and the Ape.

Doctor Adrian then concocts an idea: he will tear off the ape's flesh and use its skin to disguise himself as the escaped circus animal and murder townspeople in order to extract their spinal fluid. Thus the murders will be blamed on the Ape and he, himself, will manage to avoid any suspicion.

However, one of his attacks towards the film's end is unsuccessful; he is fatally knifed and the Ape's "true identity" is revealed.



The Ape was filmed in the city of Newhall, Santa Clarita, California.[2]


Filming began July 29, 1940, the final feature in Boris Karloff's six-picture contract with Monogram, returning only once, in 1958 for Frankenstein 1970 (1958).*

See also


  1. ^ Stephen Jacobs, Boris Karloff: More Than a Monster, Tomohawk Press 2011 p 261
  2. ^ Boston, John (March–April 2013). "Frankenstein's Monster in the SCV". The Heritage Junction Dispatch (Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society) 39 (2): 6–7. 

External links

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