The Mad Genius

Synopsis: A crippled puppeteer rescues an abused young boy and turns the boy into a great ballet dancer. Complications ensue when, as a young man, the dancer falls in love with a young woman the puppeteer is also in love with.
Genre: Drama, Horror, Romance
Director(s): Michael Curtiz
Production: Warner Bros.
81 min


Not so high on your left string.

Faster. One, two, three.

One, two, three.

Careful. They are virgins.

The applause is deafening.

Applause? I don't hear any.

I've been having a little trouble

with my ears, lately though.

I took some pills for it but

they didn't work very well.

Well, probably you didn't

put them in the right place.

Use your imagination.


[ Loud scream! ]

Stop .. stop ..

What you do?

You stay home!

Bring down the curtain.

I'll teach you.

You come home at once.

Fedor! Fedor, what you do?


Come back here, I tell you.

Come back here.

Fedor. Come back here.

Fedor. I'll break every bone in your body.

You devil!

Where do you hide from me?

If he is, the devil must

be a mountain goat.

He runs just like one, doesn't he.

At least I imagine he does.

I've never met a mountain

goat personally.

Oh, what legs he has for dancing.

Look at him .. like a deer.

Where are you going,

you good-for-nothing?

Come back here! I charge you!

Quick. Out of sight with him.


I'll break every bone in your body.

Fedor .. Fedor!

Good evening.

Where goes that boy?

What boy?

He just run in. You must have seen him.

I'm sorry. Karimsky.

Yes, sir?

Have you seen a strange

boy around here tonight?

Tonight? No.

On Friday night there was a strange boy.

He was quite an old fellow though.

We've seen no boy. You must be mistaken.

He's here, I tell you.

Oh, my dear friend. Look for yourself.

He's away from home. With what?

Hidden him safely?

I'll be lucky if I can

find him again myself.

He must be some place.

Ah, but my friend,

there are so many places.

Fedor. Fedor. Fedor!

Come to me. Where are you?

I'll kill you when I find you.

What the devil are we

going to do with that boy?

Pack up quick! We get out.

Bring me that.




Yes, Vladimir.

Hitch up the horses.

Come on. Your fingers are like feet.

Close it up.

Now go to sleep, Fedor.

Go to sleep. Don't worry about anything.

Yes, not a bad name for a dancer.

A dancer?

That's what I said.

Nature fashioned him for that.

Thighs like steel, yet plastic.

That's the body I should have had.

With my soul.

A dancer's soul.

The heritage of my mother.

Your mother?

Ah, you never saw her dance.

Like a bit of thistle-down.

She used to say to me "Ivan .. "

"You have more than I.

You have the genius."

Genius? Pah!

It's been a curse to me.

A nightmare.

Twist my dreams with torment.

It's strange you know ..

The dream I always had.

Ever since I was a little boy.

A great, shining figure.

White and beautiful.

Would come to me with wings.

Big, shimmering wings.

And put them on my back.

And beckon me.

And when I start to fly.

Oh, so happy.

My heart would almost break.

A great claw ..

Grasped my foot.

Pulled me down.

Down into the swamp.

Black, bubbling.

And I'd scream and wake.

Aye, it was a very pretty little dream.

You gives me the creeps

when you talk like that, Ivan.

Yeah, I make my own

blood run cold my friend.

When I think of what I might have been.

And what I am.

Making little wooden dolls dance.

For simple peasants.

And I should be ..

Don't look like that, Ivan.

Have you ever heard of the Golem?

Made of mud.

And given a human soul.

Of Frankenstein.

The monster created by man.

Or the homunculus.

The pale being. The product of science.

These are all dreams.

Brought to life by mortals.

I will create my own being.

That boy.

That boy will be my counterpart.

He shall be what I should have been.

I will mould him.

I will poor into him my genius.

My soul.

In him, all my dreams ..

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J. Grubb Alexander

Joseph Grubb Alexander (December 25, 1887 – January 11, 1932) was an American screenwriter of the silent era. He wrote for 98 films between 1916 and 1932. He was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania, to Joseph and Florence Grubb Alexander. His father was from Scotland and his mother was the daughter of Capt. Evan P. Grubb, a Civil War veteran. Joseph died from pneumonia in Los Angeles, California at the age of 44, and is buried at Hollywood Forever Cemetery. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "The Mad Genius" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 29 Jul 2021. <>.

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