Island of Lost Souls (The Island of Dr. Moreau)
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Island of Lost Souls (The Island of Dr. Moreau)
This first film version of H.G. Wells' Island of Dr. Moreau stars Charles Laughton as Moreau, a dedicated but sadly-misguided scientist who rules the roost on a remote island. Shipwrecked sailor Richard Arlen finds himself on Moreau's island; he soon discovers that the island's natives seem more animal than human.
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 95%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Laughton, as he managed to do in Devil and the Deep and The Sign of the Cross, gives the role of the villain a peculiarly horrifying quality by humanizing it far beyond the demands of the script."
‑ , TIME Magazine
"Not a great success at the time, probably because its horror is more intellectual than graphic, this adaptation of HG Wells' The Island of Dr Moreau is nevertheless a remarkably powerful film."
‑ Geoff Andrew, Time Out
"What pushes it over the edge into the realm of actual genius... is Laughton's absurdly good performance as Moreau, one of the great pieces of horror movie acting."
‑ Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy
"This may have been made (and banned) in the 1930s, but it remains a neatly disturbing horror with a definitive ending."
‑ Ian Nathan, Empire Magazine
"This is a horror milestone, and, despite several attempts, a better adaptation of Wells's book has yet to be made."
‑ , Film4
"While the action is not designed to appeal to other than the credulous, there are undoubtedly some horror sequences which are unrivaled."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"Although the attempt to horrify is not accomplished with any marked degree of subtlety, there is no denying that some of the scenes are ingenously fashioned and are, therefore, interesting."
‑ Mordaunt Hall, New York Times
"An eerie, atmospheric pre-code horror tale, adapted from H.G. Wells classic book, The Island of Dr. Moreau."
‑ R. L. Shaffer, IGN DVD
"Laughton is great, but overall misses the mark."
‑ Scott Nash, Three Movie Buffs
"A horror classic featuring Laughton's hammy performance and Lugosi as the keeper of the law. Better than any of its remakes."
‑ Bob Bloom, Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
"It's a grand, hokey chiller, dripping with sex and sadism and photographed in dense, Sternbergian shadows by the great cinematographer Karl Struss."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"The film precedes the articulated mind and language of Boris Karloff's creature in Bride of Frankenstein; the beasts' killing of their mad creator also anticipates the monster's destruction of Dr. Pretorius."
‑ Matthew Sorrento, Film International
"a disturbing and provocative horror gem"
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"Chilling, unforgettable Dr. Moreau telling with creeps supplied by Laughton and Lugosi."
‑ Steve Crum,
"There's not a wasted frame in this chilling horror film that was banned in England upon its first release."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
More reviews for Island of Lost Souls (The Island of Dr. Moreau) on Rotten Tomatoes