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Murders in the Zoo (1933)

Passed  |   |  Horror, Crime, Mystery  |  31 March 1933 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 571 users  
Reviews: 38 user | 19 critic

A monomaniacal zoologist is pathologically jealous of his beautiful but unfaithful wife Evelyn and will not stop short of murder to keep her.

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(as Edward Sutherland)
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Title: Murders in the Zoo (1933)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Peter Yates (as Charlie Ruggles)
...
Eric Gorman
Gail Patrick ...
Jerry Evans
...
Dr. Jack Woodford
John Lodge ...
Roger Hewitt
Kathleen Burke ...
Evelyn Gorman
Harry Beresford ...
Professor G.A. Evans
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Storyline

Eric Gorman returns with his wife Evelyn from a trip to the Orient collecting zoo animals, having killed a member of his expedition who happened one day to kiss Mrs. Gorman. On board ship Evelyn meets Roger Hewitt, who falls in love with her. After delivering his animals to the zoo, Gorman plots a way to dispose of Hewitt using one of his latest specimens, then continues using the zoo's non-human residents to do his beastly work. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Horror | Crime | Mystery

Certificate:

Passed
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 March 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Murder at the Zoo  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording) (original)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Working title: "Murder at the Zoo" See more »

Goofs

When Gorman returns from Indo-China, at least one lion is visible among his catch. Lions have never been indigenous to Southeastern Asia. See more »

Quotes

Eric Gorman: Mr. Gates, never be afraid of a wild animal. Let it alone, and it'll leave you alone. That's more than we can say of most humans.
Peter Yates: You mean that you really like these, eh?
Eric Gorman: Beasts? I love them. They're honest in their simplicity, their primative emotions... They love, they hate, they kill.
See more »

Soundtracks

Please (Lend Your Little Ear To My Pleas)
(1932)
Music by Ralph Rainger
Lyrics by Leo Robin
Hummed and sung a cappella by Charles Ruggles
Played as background music at the end
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Snakes And Tigers And Gators Oh My
31 October 2009 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Three murders are committed during this film, two of them are indeed Murders In The Zoo. The problem for the authorities is that they're not murders because animals leave no forensics to tell any tales. Well almost.

Lionel Atwill is a brilliant zoologist, tops in his field and an insanely jealous man. To be sure he's got reason to be, Kathleen Burke is not the most faithful of wives. In this before the Code classic it's really hard to tell whether Atwill was insane by nature or she's driven him that way because of her infidelities.

Because of his knowledge of animal habits and methods of killing, Atwill can hide his homicides and blame them on the zoo animals he's captured for Harry Beresford's zoo.

Two great character actors dominate Murder In The Zoo. Of course Lionel Atwill who graced so many of the best Gothic horror tales is perfectly cast as the jealous husband who's doing in all potential rivals. Charlie Ruggles is also great as the alcoholic former newspaperman who is on his last job as the zoo press agent. His nervous little everyman is great for comic relief. All that was really needed was Mary Boland in the film as the domineering wife to Ruggles which she played in so many Paramount classics.

A couple of younger players with big things destined for them both in front and behind the camera, Randolph Scott and Gail Patrick are the romantic interest. John Davis Lodge future Governor of Connecticut and Ambassador to Spain plays one of Burke's suitors who is dispatched quite cleverly.

No monsters in this film, the most terrifying thing on this planet is the mind of mortal man run amuck out of jealousy or ambition. That's what Murders In The Zoo has in abundance.


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