Death decides to take a holiday from his usual business to see what it is like to be a mortal. Posing as Prince Sirki, he spends 3 days with Duke Lambert and his guests at his dukal estate.... See full summary »
Ballet dancer Sanine may have murdered his first wife. A detective thinks so, and he's not the only one. Sanine is charming, if a little peculiar. Haidi, a ballerina, marries him. The ... See full summary »
Nan, a racketeer's daughter, is in love with The Kid, a shooting gallery showman. Despite Nan's prodding, The Kid has no ambitions about joining the rackets and making enough money to ... See full summary »
Pierre (Pierre Richard-Willm), a young lawyer, has enormous debts due to his mistress Florence (Marie Bell), and her whims of luxury life. Pierre has gone too far and put the family firm in... See full summary »
Two-part story--the first is about a washed-up Broadway actor and his tough daughter, who is a bigger star than he is; the second is about a literary agent whose newest client--a ... See full summary »
Edward G. Robinson,
Alcoholic newspaperman Steve Bramley boards the San Capador for a restful cruise, hoping to quit drinking and begin writing a book. Also on board are Steve's friend Schulte, a private ... See full summary »
Ed Beaumont is the personal friend, advisor and bodyguard to Paul Madvig, the political boss of a large city. When a mysterious murder is committed---the son of a Madvig political opponent-... See full summary »
1934's "Crime Without Passion" is a rarely seen independent written, produced, and directed by regular writing team Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur ("The Front Page"), which was followed by three more in a span of two years- "The Scoundrel," "Once in a Blue Moon," and "Soak the Rich" (Hecht directed three more without MacArthur, who never directed again). Shot on Long Island in May-June 1934, this was Claude Rains' first feature since the phenomenal success of his Hollywood debut "The Invisible Man," and the actual film debut of actress/dancer Margo, niece of Xavier Cugat, remembered as the wife of GREEN ACRES' Eddie Albert, and mother of Edward Lawrence Albert (who looked just like his beautiful mother). Top billed Rains excels as Lee Gentry, smug, self-satisfied defense attorney, cool under fire in the courtroom, dismissing his guilty clients as little more than insects, using women much the same way. On one hand is long suffering lover Carmen Brown (Margo), who simply cannot let go, while he has since fallen for Katy Costello, who would rather they part as friends (played by Whitney Bourne, also making her film debut, finishing with less than a dozen credits). The lustful Gentry schemes to rid himself of Carmen, first falsely accusing her of seeing an old flame (Stanley Ridges), then confronting her in her apartment (with a loaded gun). Things go badly as he unintentionally shoots her, then must build an alibi for himself, desperately trying to maintain his composure with his own neck in the hangman's noose. A welcome last gasp of pre-code paranoia, a fascinating study of a most unlikable lead character; Claude Rains continued his newfound stardom in "The Man Who Reclaimed His Head," "Mystery of Edwin Drood," and "The Clairvoyant." Surprise cameos from Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur as reporters interviewing Gentry 10 minutes in, even more surprising cameos from their respective wives 48 minutes in, Fanny Brice and Helen Hayes, seen by the camera panning through a hotel lobby. Another feature debut is that of Paula Trueman, a ubiquitous presence playing elderly eccentrics in the 70s and 80s, looking very much like Fanny Brice's 'Baby Snooks' in her scene stealing role as Buster Malloy, Carmen's stage partner, who inadvertently aids the despised Gentry with his meticulously plotted alibi.
0 of 0 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?