The Crime of Doctor Crespi (1935)

USA, 1935
35mm film, 16mm film [1950s US television prints], black and white, 1.37:1
mono, English

An American horror film directed by John H. Auer.

Plot Summary

Seeking revenge on Dr Stephen Ross who married his ex-girlfriend, Dr Crespi uses a drug he’s developed to place him in a trance-like state while he’s undergoing surgery. Ross is buried alive but is rescued by colleagues and sets out to get his own revenge.


Directed by: John H. Auer
[copyright unreadable]
J.H.A. Pictures [opening logo]. A J.H. Auer production
Associate Producer: Herb Hayman
Adaptation: Lewis Graham, Edward Olmstead
Story: John H. Auer
Suggested by Edgar Allan Poe’s The Premature Burial
Photography: Larry Williams
Editing: Leonard Wheeler
Recording: Clarence Wall
Art Direction: Wm. Saulter [real name: William Saulter]
Produced at: Biograph Studios, N.Y.C.

Erich von Stroheim (Dr Andre Crespi)
Harriet Russell (Estelle Gorham Ross)
Dwight Frye (Dr Thomas)
Paul Guilfoyle (Dr John Arnold)
John Bohn (Dr Stephen Ross)
Geraldine Kay (Miss Rexford)
Jeanne Kelly [real name: Jean Brooks] (Miss Gordon)
Patsy Berlin (Jeanne Ross, the child)
Joe Verdi (Di Angelo)
Dean Raymond (minister)

Alternative Titles

O Crime do Dr. Crespi – Portugal
To Eglima tou iatrou Crespi – Greece



  • Castle of Frankenstein no.8 p.42
  • Filmfax no.72 (April/May 1999) p.41 – illustrated article (The Crime of Dr. Crespi (1935) by Anthony Slide)


  • The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror by Phil Hardy (ed.) p.61-62
  • Euro Gothic: Classics of Continental Horror Cinema by Jonathan Rigby p.41
  • Golden Horrors: An Illustrated Critical Filmography, 1931-1939 by Bryan Senn pp.328-337
  • Horror and Science Fiction Films II by Donald C. Willis p.71
  • Poverty Row Studios 1929-1940 by Michael R. Pitts pp.218-221 – illustrated credits, note
  • Reference Guide to Fantastic Films by Walt Lee p.79 – credits
  • The Republic Pictures Checklist by Len D. Martin p.38 – credits, synopsis, notes
  • Sound Films, 1927-1939: A United States Filmography by Alan G. Fetrow p.128