The Benson Murder Case (1930)

Passed  |   |  Crime, Mystery, Thriller  |  13 April 1930 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.6/10 from 99 users  
Reviews: 8 user | 1 critic

A ruthless, crooked stockbroker is murdered at his luxurious country estate, and detective Philo Vance just happens to be there; he decides to find out who killed him.



(novel), (scenario)
0Check in
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

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 »

Directors: Malcolm St. Clair, Frank Tuttle
Stars: William Powell, Jean Arthur, James Hall
Jewel Robbery (1932)
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A gentleman thief charms a Viennese baron's wife and also conducts a daring daylight robbery of a jewellers.

Director: William Dieterle
Stars: William Powell, Kay Francis, Helen Vinson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Philo Vance, accompanied by his prize-losing Scottish terrier, investigates the locked-room murder of a prominent and much-hated collector whose broken Chinese vase provides an important clue.

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: William Powell, Mary Astor, Eugene Pallette
Lawyer Man (1932)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

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 »

Director: William Dieterle
Stars: William Powell, Joan Blondell, David Landau
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Nick and Nora go on holiday, and end up involved in a murder.

Director: Richard Thorpe
Stars: William Powell, Myrna Loy, Lucile Watson
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  
Directors: Merian C. Cooper, Lothar Mendes, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Richard Arlen, Fay Wray, Clive Brook
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Nick investigates the case of a missing man and later a murder that is connected to Nora's family.

Director: W.S. Van Dyke
Stars: William Powell, Myrna Loy, James Stewart
Romance | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A scatterbrained socialite hires a vagrant as a family butler...but there's more to Godfrey than meets the eye.

Director: Gregory La Cava
Stars: William Powell, Carole Lombard, Alice Brady
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

At the end of each year, the extremely wealthy but odious Greene family gets together at the spooky old family castle to establish terms of a will, though they despise each other. This year... See full summary »

Director: Frank Tuttle
Stars: William Powell, Florence Eldridge, Ullrich Haupt
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

William Powell plays William Foster, a slick attorney who stays within the law, but specializes in representing crooks and shady characters. He's adept at keeping them out of jail, winning ... See full summary »

Director: John Cromwell
Stars: William Powell, Kay Francis, Scott Kolk
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Director: Alfred E. Green
Stars: William Powell, Doris Kenyon, Marian Marsh
The Key (1934)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

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 »

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: William Powell, Edna Best, Colin Clive


Cast overview:
William 'Stage' Boyd ...
Harry Gray (as William Boyd)
Adolph Mohler
Fanny Del Roy
Richard Tucker ...
Anthony Benson
May Beatty ...
Mrs. Paula Banning
E.H. Calvert ...


A murder takes place virtually in front of Philo Vance's eyes which, for all intents and purposes, should mean that even Sergeant Heath could solve it and Philo can go back home. Not quite, and neither can Philo Vance for a long period of time. Written by Les Adams <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


DID SHE KILL? Solve the crime that shocked New York! (original print ad - first sentence all caps) See more »






Release Date:

13 April 1930 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Benson-mysteriet  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »


Followed by Night of Mystery (1937) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

William Powell To The Rescue
28 May 2010 | by (Ramsey, NJ) – See all my reviews

"The Benson Murder Case" would have been another unexceptional, run-of-the-mill murder film. Worth watching but largely stagebound and with a primitive sound system (the players' voices fade in and out as they get closer or further from the mike). The deus-ex-machina is outrageously contrived to the point of unfairness, like some of Agatha Christies' stories. It starts off on a dark and stormy night, all suspects at the country estate of a hated stock broker, and, guess what? He gets bumped off. So far, pretty routine.

Enter William Powell as Philo Vance and the picture immediately goes from a rating of 4 up to a 6. Dapper and sophisticated and with his inimitable off-handed cocksuredness, Powell rescues the film just by coming in the front door. This was his milieu and in these circumstances he was the best ever.

Also on hand is Eugene Palette as the dense Police Lieutenant. and Richard Tucker as the corpse-to-be. Mischa Auer appears as a suspicious manservant and Paul Lukas as a mendacious gigolo. If it comes on it is worth a watch as a whodunit (you won't guess) and as a very early example of a new sound film.

3 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss The Benson Murder Case (1930) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: