THE CORPSE SERIES
THE CORPSE VANISHES
The Corpse Vanishes remains one of the more deliciously outrageous horror exercises of the 1940s. Bela Lugosi, as hammy as ever, stars as Dr. Lorenz, a European horticulturist whose octogenarian wife (Elizabeth Russell) needs fluids from the glands of young virgins to remain forever young and beautiful. Jumping to conclusions, the insane medico's rationale seems to be that the best place to find a virgin is at the altar. Consequently, seven young women are in short order poisoned by a mysterious orchid just before their "I do's" and brought in a catatonic state to Dr. Lorenz' mansion in Brookdale. Cub reporter Pat Hunter (Luana Walters) is on to the scheme and visits the Lorenz estate under the pretense of researching an article on orchids. With a typical sound-stage storm brewing up, she agrees to spend the night, and what a night it proves to be. Not only is poor Pat awakened by a visit from Dr. Lorenz' slobbering, hunchbacked helper, Angel (Frank Moran, who stalks her while eating a drumstick), the reporter is also slapped in the face by the disagreeable countess, snubbed by a nasty dwarf (Angelo Rossitto), and nearly suffers the same fate as the poor brides when rescued in the nick of time by an enraged housekeeper (Minerva Urecal) and her boyfriend, Dr. Foster (Tristram Coffin).
THE CORPSE CAME C.O.D.
George Brent and Joan Blondell as rival Hollywood-based reporters Joe Medford and Rosemary Durant. When movie star Mona Harrison (Adele Jergens) receives a dead body in her morning mail, Joe and Rosemary fall over each other trying to solve the mystery and deliver a newspaper story "that'll tear this town wide open." Joe deduces that the dead man was involved with a jewelry-smuggling racket, while Rosemary chases down the stolen gems. Three murders later, the two reporters expose the killer-and though it wouldn't be nice to reveal the killer's identity.