Best Horror Movies of 1940
The Ghost Breakers
After intrepid working girl Mary Carter becomes the new owner of a reputedly haunted mansion located on Black Island near the Cuban coast, a stranger phones warning her to stay away from the castle. Undaunted, Mary sets sail for Cuba with a stowaway in her trunk—wise-cracking Larry Lawrence, a radio announcer who helps Mary get to the bottom of the voodoo magic, zombies and ghosts that supposedly curse the spooky estate.
Four explorers are summoned to Peru by the brilliant physicist Dr Thorkel. They discover a rich source of radium and a half-mad Thorkel who shrinks them down to one-fifth their normal size when they threaten to stop his unorthodox experimentation.
The Invisible Man Returns
The owner of a coal mining operation, falsely imprisoned for fratricide, takes a drug to make him invisible, despite its side effect: gradual madness.
University professor George Kingsley is struck by gangsters while crossing the street, leaving him with brain damage and one of the gangsters, Cannon, paralyzed. Kingsley's friend Dr. Sovac attends to both men, and when Cannon offers him a reward for aiding his recovery, Kovac transplants part of Cannon's brain into the dying Kingsley's skull, creating a dual personality.
Before I Hang
A physician on death row for a mercy killing is allowed to experiment on a serum using a criminals' blood, but secretly tests it on himself. He gets a pardon, but finds out he's become a Jekyll-&-Hyde.
The Mummy's Hand
A couple of young, out-of-work archaeologists in Egypt discover evidence of the burial place of the ancient Egyptian princess Ananka. After receiving funding from an eccentric magician and his beautiful daughter, they set out into the desert only to be terrorized by a sinister high priest and the living mummy Kharis who are the guardians of Ananka’s tomb.
You'll Find Out
The manager of Kay Kyser’s band books them for a birthday party bash for an heiress at a spooky mansion, where sinister forces try to kill her.
One Million B.C.
One Million B.C. is a 1940 American fantasy film produced by Hal Roach Studios and released by United Artists. It is also known by the titles Cave Man, Man and His Mate, and Tumak. The film stars Victor Mature as protagonist Tumak, a young cave man who strives to unite the uncivilized Rock Tribe and the peaceful Shell Tribe, Carole Landis as Loana, daughter of the Shell Tribe chief and Tumak's love interest, and Lon Chaney, Jr. as Tumak's stern father and leader of the Rock Tribe.
The Devil Bat
Dr. Carruthers feels bitter at being betrayed by his employers, Heath and Morton, when they became rich as a result of a product he devised. He gains revenge by electrically enlarging bats and sending them out to kill his employers' family members by instilling in the bats a hatred for a particular perfume he has discovered, which he gets his victims to apply before going outdoors. Johnny Layton, a reporter, finally figures out Carruthers is the killer and, after putting the perfume on himself, douses it on Carruthers in the hopes it will get him to give himself away. One of the two is attacked as the giant bat makes one of its screaming, swooping power dives.
Drums of Fu Manchu
The nefarious Dr. Fu Manchu searches for the keys to the tomb of Genghis Khan, in order to fulfill a prophecy that will enable him to conquer the world. His nemesis, Dr. Nayland Smith, and his associates fight to keep the evil doctor from getting his hands on the keys. In 1943, the serial that was edited together into a feature movie also called Drums of Fu Manchu.
“Sredni Vashtar” by Saki
David Bradley creates a faithfully suspenseful adaptation of a story by Saki which boasts an inadvertent post-modern attitude.
Dr. Bernard Adrian is a kindly scientist who seeks to cure a young woman's polio. He needs human spinal fluid to complete the formula for his experimental serum. Meanwhile, a vicious circus ape has broken out of its cage, and is terrorizing the townspeople. Can there be a connection?
The Door with Seven Locks
A wealthy lord dies and is entombed with a valuable deposit of jewels. Seven keys are required to unlock the tomb and get hold of the treasure. A mad doctor uses an iron maiden to systematically eliminate the heirs to the fortune.
Crimes at the Dark House
In this lurid melodrama, Tod Slaughter plays a villain who murders the wealthy Sir Percival Glyde in the gold fields of Australia and assumes his identity in order to inherit Glyde's estate in England. On arriving in England, "Sir Percival" schemes to marry an heiress for her money, and, with the connivance of the cunning Dr. Isidor Fosco, embarks on a killing spree of all who suspect him to be an imposter and would get in the way of his plans to stay Lord of the Manor.
Son of Ingagi
A newlywed couple is visited by a strange old woman who harbors a secret about the young girl's father.
The dead and the skeletons, coming out of the ground, indulge in playful dance to the music of Camille Saint-Saëns, and rejoice in the terror that they inspire.