A beautiful showgirl, name "the Canary" is a scheming nightclub singer. Blackmailing is her game and with that she ends up dead. But who killed "the Canary". All the suspects knew and were ... See full summary »
Idealistic attorney Anton Adam makes headlines when he successfully prosecutes a prominent New York racketeer named Gilmurry. Adam's sudden renown attracts the attention of high-profile ... See full summary »
Finding a deserted cattle ranch, Buck buys it and turns it into a dude ranch. But Buck is quickly in trouble with sheep men who want the ranch and then with outlaws who kidnap the daughter of the wealthy Mr. Grant.
A young American girl visits Paris accompanied by her fiancee and her wealthy uncle. There she meets and is romanced by a worldly novelist; what she doesn't know is that he is a blackmailer who is using her to get to her uncle.
A discredited diplomat accidentally finds work with a seedy private detective. The diplomat's ethics later bump up against the detective's illegal methods after their new partnership is ... See full synopsis »
British officer is assigned to duty in Ireland and gets embroiled in Anglo-Irish battles and old girl friend who is now married to an Irishman. Powell learns more than he wanted to know ... See full summary »
A beautiful showgirl, name "the Canary" is a scheming nightclub singer. Blackmailing is her game and with that she ends up dead. But who killed "the Canary". All the suspects knew and were used by her and everyone had a motive to see her dead. The only witness to the crime has also been 'rubbed out'. Only one man, the keen, fascinating, debonair detective Philo Vance, would be able to figure out who is the killer. Written by
Tony Fontana <email@example.com>
Paramount bought the rights to the first 3 S.S. Van Dine mysteries (The Benson Murder Case, The Canary Murder Case and The Greene Murder Case) as a package deal in 1928, filming the second effort first. MGM would outbid the studio for the 4th Philo Vance best-seller, The Bishop Murder Case (1930). See more »
"Probably the most asinine character in detective fiction."
One of the earliest private-eye talkies was "The Canary Murder Case," featuring William Powell as an American detective called Philo Vance ... later described by Raymond Chandler as "probably the most asinine character in detective fiction."
This type of "classic" murder mystery, transposed to an American location, must have seemed a natural for early talkie producers: few sets, all interiors, a lot of talk and little of that difficult action stuff which meant the camera might have to move around Like filming a stage play, in fact. Here was an opportunity to set up the static camera in its enclosed booth and let the actors get on with the job
Most of these films turned out to be the dullest ever made It wasn't the fault of William Powell, who played Philo Vance with wit and elegance It was the fault of a basic misconception in making private-detective movies
Powell played Vance four times... Others who, followed him were: Paul Lukas, Edmund Lowe, Warren Williams, Grant Richards, James Stephenson and Alan Curtis
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