Practitioners in the area of neurology often need to retrieve multimodal magnetic resonance (MR) images of the brain to study disease progression and to correlate observations across multiple subjects. In this paper, a novel technique for retrieving 2-D MR images (slices) in 3-D brain volumes is proposed. Given a 2-D MR query slice, the technique identifies the 3-D volume among multiple subjects in the database, associates the query slice with a specific region of the brain, and retrieves the matching slice within this region in the identified volumes. The proposed technique is capable of retrieving an image in multimodal and noisy scenarios. In this study, support vector machines (SVM) are used for identifying 3-D MR volume and for performing semantic classification of the human brain into various semantic regions. In order to achieve reliable image retrieval performance in the presence of misalignments, an image registration-based retrieval framework is developed. The proposed retrieval technique is tested on various modalities. The test results reveal superior robustness performance with respect to accuracy, speed, and multimodality.