Mad Love

Watch Mad Love

  • Passed
  • 1935
  • 1 hr 8 min
  • 7.2  (5,825)

Mad Love is a 1935 horror film directed by Karl Freund and starring Peter Lorre, Frances Drake, and Colin Clive. The movie is based on Maurice Renard's novel "The Hands of Orlac," which had previously been adapted for the screen in 1924 and 1931. The movie centers around a renowned concert pianist named Stephen Orlac (Colin Clive), who loses both of his hands in a train accident. A brilliant surgeon named Dr. Gogol (Peter Lorre) offers to perform a radical surgery to replace Orlac's hands with those of a recently executed murderer. Orlac agrees to the procedure and soon finds himself haunted by the memories and desires of the killer.

As Orlac's behavior becomes increasingly erratic, his wife Yvonne (Frances Drake) becomes convinced that he is going mad. Dr. Gogol, however, sees the situation as an opportunity to win Yvonne's affections, and he becomes increasingly obsessed with her.

Mad Love is known for Peter Lorre's chilling and unforgettable performance as Dr. Gogol. The actor, who had made his Hollywood debut in the 1931 film M, had already established himself as a master of playing creepy and unstable characters. In Mad Love, Lorre is at his best as he brings a kind of unsettling charm to the role of Dr. Gogol. His portrayal of the surgeon is both sympathetic and terrifying, and he steals every scene he is in.

Another standout performance is delivered by Colin Clive, who was best known for playing Dr. Frankenstein in the 1931 horror classic Frankenstein. In Mad Love, Clive's character is initially sympathetic as he struggles to cope with the loss of his hands. However, as Orlac's behavior becomes more erratic, Clive portrays the character's descent into madness with great intensity and nuance.

The film's production design and cinematography are also noteworthy. Karl Freund, who had previously worked as a cinematographer on such classics as Dracula and Metropolis, brings a Gothic sense of style to the film. The sets are dark and moody, and Freund frequently uses shadows and light to create a sense of unease.

Despite its strong performances and stylish visuals, Mad Love was not a commercial success upon its initial release. The film's dark themes and disturbing imagery were too much for some audiences, and it was not until years later that the movie gained a cult following.

Today, Mad Love is recognized as an important entry in the horror genre. Its influence can be seen in such later films as Brian De Palma's Dressed to Kill and David Cronenberg's Dead Ringers. However, it is Peter Lorre's unforgettable performance as Dr. Gogol that remains the film's enduring legacy. His portrayal of the demented surgeon is a masterclass in screen acting, and it ranks among the greatest horror performances of all time.

Mad Love is a 1935 horror movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 8 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.2.

Mad Love
Where to Watch Mad Love
Mad Love is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Mad Love for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 8 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.2  (5,825)