IMDb > The Bishop Murder Case (1930)

The Bishop Murder Case (1930) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

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Writers:
S.S. Van Dine (from the book by)
Lenore J. Coffee (adaptation)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Bishop Murder Case on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
3 January 1930 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The finest of all S. S. Van Dine's murder mystery stories...now an all-talking picture! (original poster) See more »
Plot:
When the body of a man nicknamed "Cock Robin" is found with an arrow in the heart on an archery range along with a chess bishop as a clue, Philo Vance investigates. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Basil Rathbone in an early detective role... See more (19 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Basil Rathbone ... Philo Vance

Leila Hyams ... Belle Dillard

Roland Young ... Sigurd Arnesson
Alec B. Francis ... Professor Bertrand Dillard
George F. Marion ... Adolph Drukker
Zelda Sears ... Mrs. Otto Drukker
Bodil Rosing ... Grete Menzel
Carroll Nye ... John E. Sprigg
Charles Quatermaine ... John Pardee (as Charles Quartermaine)
James Donlan ... Ernest Heath
Sidney Bracey ... Pyne (as Sydney Bracey)

Clarence Geldart ... John F.-X. Markham
Delmer Daves ... Raymond Sperling
Nellie Bly Baker ... Beedle
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Richard Cramer ... Detective in Park (uncredited)
Frank Fanning ... Officer Manning (uncredited)
Marcia Mae Jones ... Hungry Child in Park (uncredited)
Broderick O'Farrell ... Dr. Van Pelt (uncredited)
Douglas Scott ... Child with Book in Park (uncredited)

Directed by
David Burton (stage direction)
Nick Grinde (screen direction) (as Nick Grindé)
 
Writing credits
S.S. Van Dine (from the book by)

Lenore J. Coffee (adaptation, scenario and dialogue)

Original Music by
William Axt (uncredited)
 
Cinematography by
Roy F. Overbaugh (photographed by) (as Roy Overbaugh)
 
Film Editing by
William LeVanway (film editor)
 
Art Direction by
Cedric Gibbons 
 
Sound Department
Donald MacKenzie .... recording director (as Dr. Donald Mac Kenzie)
Frank McKenzie .... sound (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Henrietta Frazer .... wardrobe by
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
88 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.20 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric System)
Certification:
USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:TV-G (TV rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Several times Roland Young's character sarcastically calls Basil Rathbone's investigator character "Sherlock Holmes". Nine years later Rathbone would take the role of Holmes and it became his iconic role.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When Vance and fellow detectives investigate the body of Robin, who has been shot with an arrow, the angle of the arrow changes. Sometimes it's straight up out of the body, other times it's at almost a 45 degree angle.See more »
Quotes:
Philo Vance:[T Heath] Sergeant, you're much too trusting for this deceitful world. If everything happened as easy as that, life would be very simple and very dull.See more »
Movie Connections:
Followed by Philo Vance's Gamble (1947)See more »
Soundtrack:
Aloha OeSee more »

FAQ

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9 out of 9 people found the following review useful.
Basil Rathbone in an early detective role..., 22 November 2006
Author: Neil Doyle from U.S.A.

When you consider that sound had only come in a couple of years before THE BISHOP MURDER CASE, the fact that the film still has a soundtrack that needs restoration is no surprise. But I did manage to see a good print of the film on TCM and the gleaming B&W photography belied the fact that this was made in 1930.

But my sole purpose for watching was to see what BASIL RATHBONE looked like in an early detective role as Philo Vance. The mystery itself seemed a lot like an Agatha Christie whodunit because the murders were staged by a clever killer who just wasn't smart enough to outwit Philo Vance. The final revelation involves a glass of wine with poison in it ("the vessel with the pessel" film that Rathbone did with Danny Kaye comes to mind here). Rathbone's cleverness and manner of solving the crime is reminiscent of the way he played Sherlock Holmes so well in all those Sherlock films.

He also had a crisp delivery that was lacking in the other players. Only ROLAND YOUNG managed to sound as if silent films were a thing of the past. The others were clearly still in the silent mode of acting which makes Rathbone's performance even more remarkable.

Not a great mystery by any means and the sets, despite some fine photography, are on the primitive side--but addicts of detective stories should enjoy this one.

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