Best Horror Movies of 1940

1.

The Ghost Breakers

3.7
7.2/10 IMDB

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.

Starring: Bob Hope, Paulette Goddard, Richard Carlson, Paul Lukas, Willie Best, Pedro de Cordoba, Virginia Brissac, Noble Johnson, Anthony Quinn, Tom Dugan ..
Directed by: George Marshall
Release date: 1940-06-21
2.

Dr. Cyclops

3.4
6.4/10 IMDB

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.

Starring: Albert Dekker, Thomas Coley, Janice Logan, Charles Halton, Victor Kilian, Frank Yaconelli, Paul Fix, Frank Reicher, Jane Webb, Billy Wilkerson ..
Directed by: Ernest B. Schoedsack
Release date: 1940-04-09
Best Horror Movies of 1940 : The Invisible Man Returns
3.

The Invisible Man Returns

3.3
6.5/10 IMDB

The owner of a coal mining operation, falsely imprisoned for fratricide, takes a drug to make him invisible, despite its side effect: gradual madness.

Starring: Cedric Hardwicke, Vincent Price, Nan Grey, John Sutton, Cecil Kellaway, Alan Napier, Forrester Harvey, Jimmy Aubrey, Billy Bevan, Harry Cording ..
Directed by: Joe May
Release date: 1940-01-12
4.

The Mummy's Hand

3.3
6.1/10 IMDB

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.

Starring: Dick Foran, Peggy Moran, Wallace Ford, George Zucco, Cecil Kellaway, Charles Trowbridge, Tom Tyler, Eduardo Ciannelli, Sig Arno, Leon Belasco ..
Directed by: Christy Cabanne
Release date: 1940-09-20
5.

You'll Find Out

3.2
6.3/10 IMDB

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.

Starring: Kay Kyser, Boris Karloff, Peter Lorre, Bela Lugosi, Helen Parrish, Dennis O'Keefe, Alma Kruger, Bess Flowers, Joseph Eggenton, Kay Kyser Band ..
Directed by: David Butler
Release date: 1940-11-22
6.

One Million B.C.

3.0
5.7/10 IMDB

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.

Starring: Victor Mature, Carole Landis, Lon Chaney Jr., John Hubbard, Mamo Clark, Inez Palange, Edgar Edwards, Nigel De Brulier, Conrad Nagel, Jacqueline Dalya ..
Directed by: Hal Roach, Hal Roach, Jr.
Release date: 1940-04-05
7.

The Devil Bat

2.9
5.6/10 IMDB

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.

Starring: Bela Lugosi, Suzanne Kaaren, Dave O'Brien, Guy Usher, Yolande Donlan, Donald Kerr, Edmund Mortimer, Gene O'Donnell, Alan Baldwin, John Ellis ..
Directed by: Jean Yarbrough
Release date: 1940-12-13
Best Horror Movies of 1940 : Before I Hang
8.

Before I Hang

2.8
6.1/10 IMDB

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.

Starring: Boris Karloff, Evelyn Keyes, Bruce Bennett, Don Beddoe, Edward Van Sloan, Ben Taggart, Pedro de Cordoba, Wright Kramer, Bertram Marburgh, Robert Fiske ..
Directed by: Nick Grinde
Release date: 1940-09-17
Best Horror Movies of 1940 : Drums of Fu Manchu
9.

Drums of Fu Manchu

2.7
6.9/10 IMDB

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.

Starring: Henry Brandon, William Royle, Robert Kellard, Luana Walters, Olaf Hytten, Tom Chatterton, Gloria Franklin, John Merton, George Cleveland, John Dilson ..
Directed by: John English, William Witney
Release date: 1940-03-15
10.

“Sredni Vashtar” by Saki

2.6
6.2/10 IMDB

David Bradley creates a faithfully suspenseful adaptation of a story by Saki which boasts an inadvertent post-modern attitude.

Starring: David Bradley, Mrs. Herbert Hyde, Reny Kidd, Lester Luther, Lucielle Powell ..
Directed by: David Bradley
Release date: 1940-11-13

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