Dr. Kildare's Strange Case (April 12, 1940)
Released on April 12, 1940: Dr. Kildare takes a horrible chance in order to save the career of a brain surgeon that wants Dr. Kildare's girlfriend
Produced by Lou L. Ostrow
Directed by Harold S. Bucquet
Written by Max Brand, Willis Goldbeck and Harry Ruskin.
The Actors: Lew Ayres (Dr. James 'Jimmy' Kildare), Lionel Barrymore (Dr. Leonard Gillespie), Laraine Day (Nurse Mary Lamont), Shepperd Strudwick (Dr. Gregory 'Greg' Lane), Samuel S. Hinds (Dr. Stephen Kildare), Emma Dunn (Mrs. Martha Kildare), Nat Pendleton (Joe Wayman the ambulance driver), Walter Kingsford (Dr. S.J. 'Walter' Carew), Alma Kruger (Molly Byrd, Superintendant of Nurses), John Eldredge (Henry Adams, the amnesia patient), Nell Craig (Nurse 'Nosy' Parker), Marie Blake (Sally the switchboard operator), Charles Waldron (Dr. 'Egghead' Squires), George Lessey (Rufus Ingersoll), Tom Collins (Dr. Joiner), George Reed (Conover, Dr. Gillespie's attendant), Paul Porcasi (Antonio 'Tony' the hospital chef), Horace McMahon (J. Harold 'Fog Horn' Murphy), Frank Orth (Mike Ryan, Sullivan's hospital cafe), Margaret Seddon (Mrs. Julia Cray, the skin alergy patient), Fay Helm (Mrs. Henry Adams), Marcia Mae Jones (Florence, the waiting room nurse), Donald Douglas (Mr. Grayson the patient losing his eyesight)
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Good Brain Surgeon or Doctor Death?
In the 1930's and 1940's there was no more beloved series of movies than the ones featuring Dr. Kildare, played by Lew Ayres, and his mentor Dr. Gillespie, played by the legendary Lionel Barrymore. In this episode, Dr. Kildare has competition for his girlfriend Nurse Mary Lamont. Dr. Greg Lane, from a wealthy family, is the hospital's brain surgeon, and he has all of the charm that Dr. Kildare has, plus lots of money to pamper Nurse Lamont. But Dr. Lane has problems of his own. After several necessary brain surgeries end with the death of the patient, it seems that Dr. Lane’s career and reputation is in doubt. Dr. Gillespie and Dr. Kildare both believe he is a good surgeon in spite of these deaths, but the hospital board thinks he may not be the good surgeon that he should be.
Dr. Kildare is assigned to assist Dr. Lane for a while, and Wednesday night a man hit by a truck is brought into the emergency room in need of immediate brain surgery. The man was wearing an overcoat and pajamas, with no identification. Although Dr. Lane is hesitant to operate, because he is having doubts about his abilities, Dr. Kildare convinces him to go ahead and operate immediately to save the man's life. The operation is successful, but when the man wakes up Thursday morning after surgery, he speaks incoherently about ‘Friday’ - it seems to Dr. Kildare that the man has gone insane. The hospital administrator is convinced that the surgery by Dr. Lane has resulted in the man going insane, and prepare to take action that may end Dr. Lane's career. Dr. Kildare becomes convinced that the patient may have already been insane before the operation, so he sets out to discover the man's identity and whether he was insane before he was hit by a truck.
It turns out that maybe the man isn't insane at all, and there is a compelling reason that he is vitally interested in reaching Friday. Can Dr. Kildare discover what momentous importance Friday has to this man? Is the man really insane after all? Will Dr. Kildare be able to both save the patient, and Dr. Lane’s career, and not lose his girlfriend at the same time? Only time and a big bowl of popcorn will tell . . . about an hour and sixteen minutes of time watching this medical thriller with your best buttered popcorn and a cold soda.
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