5.6/10
219
19 user 3 critic

Murder at Midnight (1931)

Unrated | | Mystery | 1 September 1931 (USA)
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 »

Director:

(as Frank Strayer)

Writers:

(story) (as W. Scott Darling), (story) (as Frank Strayer) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Watch Now

Free at Internet Archive

WATCH NOW
ON DISC

Videos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Suspected crime boss Nate Girard beats a murder rap, and newspaper photog Kent Murdock is on the story. Girard and lawyer Redfield throw a party for the news men where Murdock romances a ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Barton
Stars: Lew Ayres, Gail Patrick, Paul Kelly
The Moonstone (1934)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

Typical Monogram whodunit from the 30's, with dialogue and sound effects based on the well known mystery book with same title. A valuable gem from India is stolen in an old dark mansion and... See full summary »

Director: Reginald Barker
Stars: David Manners, Phyllis Barry, Gustav von Seyffertitz
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

A mysterious killer known as The Fiend uses an unusual bullet as his trademark for his murders.

Director: Robert F. Hill
Stars: June Collyer, Lloyd Hughes, Lawrence Gray
Crime | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A boxer flees believing he has comitted a murder while he was drunk.

Director: Busby Berkeley
Stars: John Garfield, Claude Rains, The 'Dead End' Kids
Certificate: Passed Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Eight strangers are invited by a mysterious unknown host to spend the night in a penthouse apartment. The eight (5 men, 3 women) are wined, dined, then greeted by their host's voice via a ... See full summary »

Director: Roy William Neill
Stars: Donald Cook, Genevieve Tobin, Hardie Albright
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

The relatives of a rich old woman unsuccessfully try to have her declared insane, so they can divide up her money. To show them that there are no hard feelings, she invites them to her ... See full summary »

Director: Phil Rosen
Stars: Wallace Ford, Marian Marsh, Sarah Padden
The Pay-Off (1930)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A thug robs a young engaged couple of their last few dollars. When the thug's gang boss hears of the robbery, he gives them back their money and takes them under his wing. The thug, ... See full summary »

Director: Lowell Sherman
Stars: Lowell Sherman, Marian Nixon, Hugh Trevor
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

In Paris, a down and out medical student Johann Radek (Franchot Tone) is paid by Bill Kirby (Robert Hutton) to murder his wealthy aunt. A knife grinder (Burgess Meredith) is suspected, but ... See full summary »

Directors: Burgess Meredith, Irving Allen, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Charles Laughton, Franchot Tone, Burgess Meredith
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

During a stormy night at an old dark mansion, people who claim to see ghosts roaming the halls are later found murdered.

Director: Frank R. Strayer
Stars: John Miljan, June Collyer, Richard Carle
Crime | Film-Noir | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

Lamont Cranston assumes his secret identity as "The Shadow", to break up an attempted robbery at an attorney's office. When the police search the scene, Cranston must assume the identity of... See full summary »

Director: Lynn Shores
Stars: Rod La Rocque, Agnes Anderson, James Blakeley
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

In a cheap hotel-room in New York City Jelke shoots gangster Joe Wells, takes a package from his pocket and flees.Wells staggers into an alley. On her way to her apartment above a wax ... See full summary »

Director: William C. Thomas
Stars: William Gargan, Ann Savage, Leo Gorcey
Mystery Liner (1934)
Certificate: Passed Adventure | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  

Police try to solve a murder on board an ocean liner.

Director: William Nigh
Stars: Noah Beery, Astrid Allwyn, Edwin Maxwell
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Millie Scripps
Hale Hamilton ...
Phillip Montrose
Robert Elliott ...
Inspector Taylor
Clara Blandick ...
Aunt Julia Gray Kennedy
Brandon Hurst ...
Lawrence
Leslie Fenton ...
Walter Grayson
William Humphrey ...
Colton
Tyrell Davis ...
The Englishman
Aileen Carlyle ...
Ella (as Aileen Carlisle)
Kenneth Thomson ...
Jim Kennedy
Robert Ellis ...
Duncan Channing
Edit

Storyline

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 D Jensen

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

murder | b movie | See All (2) »

Taglines:

Fingers of suspicion moving like the hands of a clock! See more »

Genres:

Mystery

Certificate:

Unrated

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 September 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Monster Kills  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (RCA Photophone Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This film received its first telecast Tuesday 21 May 1940 on New York City's pioneer, and still experimental television station W2XBS. See more »

Quotes

Detective Carter: [about the butler's body] Is he dead?
Inspector Taylor: No.... It's his day off.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Pugwall: Extra-Terrestrials (1991) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Interesting Mystery Story Makes Up For An Otherwise Routine Production
16 September 2005 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

The mystery story in "Murder at Midnight" is an interesting one, with some good plot turns, plenty of suspects, and a competition between the police and some amateur sleuths to see who can solve the case first. The story is good enough to make up for the rest of the production, which is routine or somewhat weak in several other respects.

The story starts cleverly, with a murder committed in the course of a party game, and the scenario is well-written, maintaining the tension and interest all the way to the finale. There are clues and suspects in abundance, and most of the details fit together pretty well. As another reviewer has observed, it gives you a fair chance to figure things out yourself. If the rest of the production had been up to the level of the story, this might have been one of the classics of its era.

Some of its weaknesses are simply the common ones of the early 1930s: the irregular pacing and the distracting background, which unfortunately keep the script's rather snappy dialogue from working better. It also could have been improved if more attention had been given to the atmosphere, and with a somewhat stronger cast. The best performance comes from Clara Blandick as a cantankerous aunt, but the rest of the cast is mostly undistinguished, although Aileen Pringle and Alice White are both quite pleasant too look at.

Nevertheless, it's still well worth seeing, at least if you enjoy movies of its era, because the story really is a good one for its genre. With some improvements, it could have been quite good.


10 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Murder at Midnight (1931) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?