A dashing insurance company investigator tries to catch an arsonist before he...or she...can strike again.

Director:

Writers:

(story) (as Graham Baker), | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Thomas Ignatius 'Tom' Fletcher
...
Adrienne Martin / Adeline Maxwell
...
John Grayson
Robert Middlemass ...
Fire Chief Mulligan
Wyrley Birch ...
Warden
...
District Attorney Cope
Guy Usher ...
Police Chief Roberts
Miki Morita ...
Noah
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Alma Chester ...
Janitor's Wife (scenes deleted)
...
Baldheaded Doorman (scenes deleted)
Mike Lally ...
Taxi Driver (scenes deleted)
...
Mugg (scenes deleted)
Louis Natheaux ...
Headwaiter (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

A dashing insurance company investigator tries to catch an arsonist before he...or she...can strike again.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Mystery

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 October 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El gran final  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Robert Osborne, the script was submitted to the Production Code office for review in 1934 and it was rejected on the grounds that the film could teach people how to commit arson. The studio turned for help to an insurance company and the Los Angeles fire department. Both wrote letters to the Code office challenging the ruling. In a rare instance for the day, their decision was reversed. See more »

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User Reviews

 
So Who's the Firebug
11 March 2015 | by (Claremont,USA) – See all my reviews

The 30's were full of amateur sleuths. This Columbia production amounts to a neat variation. Instead of a gentleman detective, Fletcher's (Lowe) a professional arson investigator, cocky and high-priced, with a Sherlock instinct for sifting through ashes. So who's the firebug setting half the town ablaze. We figure it's got to be one of the supporting cast, at least that's the way the game usually works. But in this nifty screenplay, the culprit could even be a cast principal, since they have reasons as well. But whatever you do, watch out for those lashing flames. They're realistic as heck.

Lowe's too cocky here to be really likable, but he does command center stage. Too bad the actor's largely forgotten since he could pass for William Powell's over-eager brother. On the other hand, Sothern hasn't yet created her sparkling comedic side and hasn't much to do but stand around and look blonde. Then too, I really like the movie's added comedic touches, like the comely blonde secretary, who soon gives way to an annoyingly squeaky replacement, who in turn gives way to a battle-hardened witch— the company's way of punishing the demanding Fletcher. Then there're the street spies who are either "blind" old guys or "harmless" old ladies. Touches like these lift a programmer from the merely ordinary to the memorable. Yet, I have to agree with reviewer planktonrules. The relationship between Fletcher and his assistant Grayson (Stevens) goes suddenly sour mid-way through without explanation (was this an error of editing?).

Anyway, the 60-minutes is a better than average programmer with a number of engaging touches.


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