Devil Commands (1941 R55) US 1/2 Sheet Poster
1955 re-release of Columbia's Boris Karloff 1941 horror, which essentially covered the same ground as his other Mad Doctor films of the period, The Man With Nine Lives and Before I Hang (both 1940). After Dr. Blair's wife is killed in a car accident, he becomes absorbed in his experiments, recording people's brain waves. When he thinks he has somehow made contact with her, he becomes obsessed with his attempts to communicate. Karloff embraces the kindly scientist becoming embroiled in 'things human beings have no right to know!' role. Throwing in fraudulent mediums, a lumbering manservant, grave-robbing and murder, Edward Dmytryk's rather cheap looking production does at least have some effectively macabre props, which make their way onto the poster.
This is an early effort from the director who went on to exploitation classic The Sniper (1952) before his 50s heyday with The Caine Mutiny (1954), Broken Lance (1955) and The Left Hand of God (1955) all the way to Bluebeard (1972). Although she was perfectly serviceable as Karloff's daughter, The Devil Commands seems to have been the film that persuaded Amanda Duff to abandon her acting career. Special effects were by the Dallon Brothers (three of them) who owned Dallon Labs, a pharmaceutical supply (and movie props) company with lots of test tubes to spare.
Condition: VERY GOOD / FINE - Rolled, border paper loss and two large tears to right hand side (one repaired to rear with brown paper tape), spotting in bottom left corner and general grubbiness on borders.
Cast: Boris Karloff, Richard Fiske, Anne Revere (excellent as the medium), Cy Schindell (who spent practically his entire career as an uncredited thug) and Dorothy Adams