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The Kennel Murder Case (1933)

 -  Mystery  -  28 October 1933 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 1,661 users  
Reviews: 48 user | 17 critic

Philo Vance, accompanied by his prize-losing Scottish terrier, investigates the locked-room murder of a prominent and much-hated collector whose broken Chinese vase provides an important clue.

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Title: The Kennel Murder Case (1933)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Raymond Wrede - the Secretary
Robert McWade ...
Robert Barrat ...
Frank Conroy ...
Etienne Girardot ...
James Lee ...
Liang - the Cook
Paul Cavanagh ...
Sir Thomas MacDonald (as Paul Cavanaugh)
Arthur Hohl ...
Helen Vinson ...
Jack La Rue ...
Eduardo Grassi (as Jack LaRue)
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Storyline

Archer Coe has been found dead in his locked bedroom. The cops consider it suicide, but Philo believes otherwise. When the Coroner shows up, he finds that Archer had been hit with a blunt object, stabbed and shot - making suicide unlikely. When the evidence points to his brother, Brisbane is found stabbed to death in the closet. Archer had a number of enemies, any one of which would have been glad to knock him off, but which one did and how did the murder occur in a room looked from the inside. Only one man, the keen, fascinating, debonair detective Philo Vance, would be able to figure out who is the killer. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A beautiful debutante trapped in a house of hate...A glamorous stage star keeping a tryst with a "dead" man...A corpse walking upstairs to commit suicide...A wounded dog that knew the solution to the most baffling mystery ever tackled by the most fascinating sleuth since Sherlock Holmes! See more »

Genres:

Mystery

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 October 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Il pugnale cinese  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The 1940 movie "Calling Philo Vance" used the exact same plot as "Kennel Murder Case," down to the name Archer Coe and his brother Brisbane. See more »

Goofs

The desk Sergeant taking the call at the station house about Archer Coe is wearing stripes, but has a patrolman's badge on. The Sergeant's badge is a different shape and larger. See more »

Quotes

Dist. Atty. Markham: Haven't you got any ideas, Vance?
Philo Vance: Markham, it's a maze of conflicting clues. Any one of seven people might have done it.
Detective Sgt. Heath: We couldn't convict seven people, Mr. Vance.
Philo Vance: You couldn't convict one with the evidence you've got.
See more »

Connections

Followed by Calling Philo Vance (1940) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Busy Whodunit
25 August 2002 | by (brighton, ma) – See all my reviews

For those who like their murder mysteries busy, this is definitely the one to see, as it is chock full of interesting and suspicious characters, most of them wealthy Long Island socialite types. As the star detective, William Powell is alternately starchy and inspired, behaving at times as if he and his suit went to the cleaners and got pressed together. Mary Astor is very lovely here.

Powell had made a career out of playing the lead character, Philo Vance, in a series of movies made at a couple of studios over several years. In-between these films he developed into a somewhat offbeat romantic lead, at times even essaying gentleman gangster roles. Already middle-aged, he was stuck in somewhat of a career rut by the time this one came along. As with so many early talkie stars, it seemed that his time had come and gone, that he was fine for early Depression Prohibition-era films, but that with changing times he was perhaps too mature and dandyish to endure.

The Kennel Murder Case, directed by the criminally neglected Michael Curtiz, is one of the last of the "old Powells", while the next year would herald in the first of the new ones, The Thin Man, the success of which would catapult its leading players into the Hollywood stratosphere. In Kennel we can see the movies still in a somewhat stiff, ritualized pattern, as the camera does not move much, with the acting, like the presentation, tending toward the theatrical. There's no harm in this approach, though, which has its charms. It gives the movie a baroque quality.


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