Before I Hang (Columbia 1940, Boris Karloff, Evelyn Keyes)

Before I Hang

Boris Karloff is cast in an archetypal mad scientist role in Before I Hang and, provided with a typical B feature horror movie screenplay by Robert D Andrews, he did everything that was expected of him.

Demented doctor Karloff searches for a serum to combat ageing and, failing to cure a patient suffering from advanced age, commits a mercy killing and is sentenced to die on the gallows. A surprisingly liberal prison establishment allows him to continue his experiments with the help of prison surgeon Edward Van Sloan while he waits for execution and, to ensure the success of his new serum, Karloff uses the blood of a convicted killer.

When he tests the serum on himself, he is transformed into a young man. His sentence is commuted to life imprisonment but, sadly, the serum has turned him into a murderer. He strangles Van Sloan and, before he is finally shot and killed by a guard on his way back to prison, three others die at his hands …

Boris Karloff as Dr. John Garth
Evelyn Keyes as Martha Garth
Bruce Bennett as Dr. Paul Ames
Edward Van Sloan as Dr. Ralph Howard
Ben Taggart as Warden Thompson
Pedro de Cordoba as Victor Sondini
Wright Kramer as George Wharton
Bertram Marburgh as Stephen Barclay
Don Beddoe as Capt. McGraw
Robert Fiske as District Attorney
Kenneth MacDonald as Anson, Prison Guard
Frank Richards as Otto Kron – Convict

crew details
Director: Nick Grinde
Screenplay: Robert D. Andrews

production details
Country: USA
Studio: Columbia
Year of Release: 1940
Duration: 62 minutes

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