Richard Grant is a lawyer who believes that murder under certain circumstances is justifiable. Richard's daughter, Barbara, takes her dad to a dinner party hosted by Richard's old friend, ... See full summary »
Richard Grant is a lawyer who believes that murder under certain circumstances is justifiable. Richard's daughter, Barbara, takes her dad to a dinner party hosted by Richard's old friend, wealthy playboy, Gordon Rich. Gordon tells Richard that he and Barbara plan to marry. Richard threatens Gordon's life if he marries Barbara. Richard is unaware that Barbara has no plans to marry Gordon, and she's in love with Tommy Osgood. Richard enraged of the thought of Barbara marrying Gordon goes into Gordon's room, undetected, and kills him...Has Richard committed the perfect crime? Written by
Although Forrester Harvey is credited onscreen as Spencer Wilson, it is Charles Crockett's character who is referred to as "Mr. Wilson" at one point. Harvey's character name is never spoken in the movie. See more »
Guilty Hands is listed as the film Lionel Barrymore followed with after his Oscar winning performance for A Free Soul. Nothing is truer in the film business than if something succeeds, follow it with several imitations.
In A Free Soul Barrymore played a defense attorney who defends gangsters but doesn't want them courting his daughter. In Guilty Hands Barrymore is a former prosecuting attorney who does not like the news that a playboy client wants to marry his daughter Madge Evans and take her away from her earnest sweetheart William Bakewell. He says that he will kill the client Alan Mowbray and soon to prevent it.
And by God he does kill him and really cleverly as well, it looks like suicide. However the Mowbray's former mistress Kay Francis is well on to him. Even though he was throwing her over, Francis is still carrying a torch.
By 1930 at least this cast of players had mastered the technique of sound film and there was no overacting even in a film like this which goes melodramatic. I was impressed by Kay Francis in the climax where Barrymore with his years of criminal justice experience walks the local police through the scene and has them convinced of suicide. Yet your main focus is on Francis who with her expressions conveys a gallery of emotions as she knows the truth, but Barrymore has her cowed.
Guilty Hands, a decent followup to A Free Soul is way melodramatic, but still has a certain fascination. Watch Francis in this, she really is something.
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