The Mysterious Doctor (1943) Is Hour Long Guessing
A wartime Warners horror film (yes, I'd call it
that) that should have been put into a dedicated chiller package for TV, but
apparently never was. There is a headless ghost decapitating others on swampy
ground you'd expect Sherlock Holmes to investigate were this Universal.
Shock-folk lend comfort of recognition: John Loder, Lester Matthews (he of The
Raven and Werewolf OfLondon), and Matt Willis, who'd go wolfish for Columbia a same year with
Return Of The Vampire. WB overlays the whole with German scheme to exploit a
haunted tin mine outside "a tiny Cornish village," further linking
The Mysterious Doctor to us v. Axis strategy of the Sherlock series, though by the time
they'd gotten around to The Scarlet Claw, which is very similar to this, the
war references were dropped from Holmes in favor of straight mystery with horrific overlace.
The convenience of a programmer like this was Warners' ability to package it
with another of thriller inclination, The Gorilla Man, to have a chill program
for 1943 marketing that saw nearly all monster movies sold as B's and in pairs.