Wealthy Mr. Kennedy shoots his secretary, Channing, during a parlor game, but it turns out the gun was loaded with real bullets. Luckily, criminologist Phillip Montrose is on hand to help ... See full summary »
Wealthy Mr. Kennedy shoots his secretary, Channing, during a parlor game, but it turns out the gun was loaded with real bullets. Luckily, criminologist Phillip Montrose is on hand to help the police. When Kennedy quickly ends up dead as well, the police think it's a tidy murder-suicide, but the family lawyer knows of a letter that voiced Kennedy's suspicions about someone who was out to get him. Soon, the cops are on the trail of a ruthless and clever killer who is one step ahead of even Montrose. Written by
This is prototypical whodunit. It has atmosphere, interesting characters with personality flying all over the place, hard nut police detectives, most of whom aren't very smart, and that air of snobbery. The film begins with a shooting during a game of charades, where a gun, supposedly holding blanks, proves the undoing of one of the characters, a man who changed his will at the last moment because he sensed danger. A loudmouth detective shows up on the scene and treats everyone like dirt. He shouts in their faces and tries to intimidate. The people at the mansion are upper crust and resent his invasions. Mixed in are a nervous wreck, a cute maid, a stodgy butler, a matriarch, and several other figures who could have participated. There are also some interesting dealings with the telephone (which I won't reveal). The pacing is pretty good and the ending is acceptable. One character who cracked me up was a policeman who spent the whole movie guarding people and eating peanuts in the shell. There's a great scene where the butler brings him a large bowl because he has been tossing the shells on the floor. The cop, puts the peanuts that were in his pocket, into the bowl, then continues to throw the peanut shells on the floor. It's a nice little story and worth watching.
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