IMDb > The Bishop Murder Case (1930)

The Bishop Murder Case (1930) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

User Rating:
6.0/10   359 votes »
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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:
A passable murder mystery, but with pitiful comedy and lots of red herrings. 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 by)
Nick Grinde (screen direction by) (as Nick Grindé)
 
Writing credits
S.S. Van Dine (from the book by)

Lenore J. Coffee (adaptation, scenario and dialogue by)

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:
Miscellaneous: Zelda Sears is credited on-screen as playing "Mrs. Otto Drukker," but throughout the film she is called Miss Drucker and is referred to as the sister of Adolph Drukker, with no other Drukker in evidence (in particular, there is no Otto). This does, however, duplicate the name given in the "Cast of Characters" of the original book by S. S. Van Dine. (Although, in the book, she is listed as Adolph Drukker's mother.)See more »
Quotes:
Belle Dillard:[as Sprigg and Arnesson enter] Eric, Eric! I'm so glad you're here. Robin's been killed!
John E. Sprigg:Robin?
Sigurd Arnesson:Cock Robin. Well, his name was against him, wasn't it?
See more »
Movie Connections:
Followed by The Scarab Murder Case (1936)See more »
Soundtrack:
Waltz in A Minor, Op.34, No.2 ('Waltz Brilliante')See more »

FAQ

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11 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
A passable murder mystery, but with pitiful comedy and lots of red herrings., 25 November 1998
Author: Arthur Hausner (ahausner16@gmail.com) from Pine Grove, California

Basil Rathbone makes a good Philo Vance in this murder mystery involving nursery rhymes. It's a forerunner of his great portrayal of Sherlock Holmes later in his career. He even uses his powers of observation to deduce that the sergeant (James Donlan) wrote a check that afternoon, soon has a date with a woman, etc., much the same way Holmes did, continually astounding Dr. Watson. But the comedy Donlan provides - and he's the only comic relief in the film - is on an infantile level. When he sees Rathbone for the first time, he says "I've solved this case, Mr. Vance. It's a murder." The script is really less than lacking in the humor department. On the other hand, all the other characters do not behave as stupid, and are believable in their roles. I loved the interesting faces and characterizations of George F. Marion and Charles Quartermaine. And there is one lovely photographed scene when Leila Hyams is sitting at a desk with a triple mirror when a sinister hand opens the door. You see her terrified face from four different angles at once, and it's a stunning effect.

This is the type of mystery that is virtually impossible to figure out. You have to go with the flow and watch the events unfold until the end when they are explained. There are lots of red herrings along the way, so I found myself switching from one suspect to another as the probable murderer. It was fun.

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