Creature with the Atom Brain

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Creature with the Atom Brain. Edward L. Cahn, dir. Curt Siodmak, script. USA: Clover, Columbia (prod.) / Columbia (dist.), 1955.

Related to what one flippant amateur critic called the "rich-dead-guy's-brain-in-a-jar movie" series, of which Donovan's Brain (1953)—based on Curt Siodmak's novel (1943)—is the classic. According to Joe Kuhr, "In Atom Brain, men are turned into radio-controlled zombies when a former Nazi scientist replaces their brains with radioactive matter" (e-mail note). According to the IMDb synopsis, the Nazi scientist does his most recent nefarious deeds "in his quest to help an exiled American gangster return to power." Note the variation of villains from the evil "rich-dead-guy's brain" of Donovan (1943/1953) to brain-replacement by a Nazi on behalf of a criminal (1955) to mind-control by more obvious stand-ins for Communists (e.g., Robert A. Heinlein's novel The Puppet Masters [1951; film version 1994]). Cf. and contrast mind-control helmets in original Buck Rogers series (1939) and Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius; cf. and contrast radio-control with TV control in Videodrome and film version, only, of The Twonky. (RDE, 26/06/03)