When the body of Violet Feverel is discovered on the Central Park bridle path, Inspector Oscar Piper is about to declare her death accidental from a thrown horse, until his friend and amateur detective Hildegarde Withers locates the horse and discovers blood on the horse. The coroner deems it a murder when the cause of death is shown to be by a blunt instrument on the victim's head. The suspects include Violet's ex-husband, Don Gregg, who she jailed for nonpayment of alimony, but who was just released by a forged court order; Latigo Wells, the manager of Violet's stables and who had an argument with her that morning; and Eddie Fry, who had quarreled with Violet over his seeing her sister, Barbara Foley, and who was about to elope with Barbara. At Don's Long Island home, Hildegarde and Oscar meet his sickly father, Patrick, the caretaker, Chris Thomas, and his crippled son, Joey. After Patrick is murdered, Hildegarde snoops around and discovers clues which pinpoint the murderer, who is... Written by
Arthur Hausner <firstname.lastname@example.org>
A somewhat unconvincing murder mystery that is still fun to watch unfold.
This fourth movie in the Hildegarde Withers-Oscar Piper series has Helen Broderick replacing Edna May Oliver in the Withers role. She's the most sophisticated of the three who played the role (the other was ZaSu Pitts) but I still enjoyed the banter she has with James Gleason, who played Piper in the entire series. The plot is a bit hard to follow (I watched it twice to clear up some points) and it is impossible to determine or even guess who the killer is. That didn't bother me, since I had fun with lots of comedy in the film. Willie Best has his usual steroetyped negro role and James Donlan plays the more-or-less inept detective. I particularly enjoyed the red herring of the pipe, which eventually reveals how to tell if a person has false teeth.
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