3 user 1 critic

Special Agent K-7 (1936)

Passed | | Action, Crime, Mystery | 5 May 1936 (USA)
(1937) Walter McGrail, Irving Pichel, Queenie Smith, Donald Reed. A fine poverty row thriller. Agent K-7 finds himself knee-deep in a murder mystery at a posh nightclub run by a mobster. ... See full summary »


(as Raymond K. Johnson)


(photoplay), (additional dialogue) | 1 more credit »

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Queenie Smith ...
Ollie O'Dea
Lester Owens
Billy Westrop
Willy Castello ...
Eddie Geller
Tony Blank
Chief Agent John Adams
Silky Samuels (as Malcolm MacGregor)
Hans Joby ...
Schmidt (as Capt. John Peters)
George Eldredge ...
Prosecuting Attorney Ames
Henri Menjou ...
Smaltz (as Henry Menjou)
David MacDonald ...
Police Capt. Hall


(1937) Walter McGrail, Irving Pichel, Queenie Smith, Donald Reed. A fine poverty row thriller. Agent K-7 finds himself knee-deep in a murder mystery at a posh nightclub run by a mobster. Pichel is great as the smooth-talking lawyer with gangland ties. Who done it? Lots of guys in cool suits, gorgeous dames, and gangland patter. There's even a nifty musical number. 16mm. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

5 May 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Crimen misterioso  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The version of this film available on archive.org eliminates the original music under the opening credits and substitutes a more recent recording. See more »


References Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936) See more »


Actions Speak Louder Than Words
Written by Magnus Rosman, (as Ross Magnus) and Billie Rice
Sung by and played on piano by Joy Hodges
See more »

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User Reviews

Good plot, but real low budget film
24 March 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

From 1929 to the early 1950s, thousands of cheap movies were made in what was then known as Hollywood's Poverty Row. I saw a good number of those growing up in the 1940s and early 1950s – especially Westerns, with some gangster, monster and sci-fi flicks. Those were shown at the Saturday matinées for kids. We usually saw double-headers in the theater. We had a dime to go to the movies. It cost 9¢ to get in and the last penny bought us a small bag of popcorn. By the mid-1950s, I was working weekends for my dad's business and had grown out of the kids' matinées. TV was becoming widespread by then, and the Saturday matinées didn't last much longer. The price of admission with a bag of popcorn then was 15¢.

The mystery, crime, horror and other Poverty Row movies in those days competed with the bigger films and were shown at night. When we consider the output of the major studios over several decades, it's a wonder that any of those lesser studio products survive today. Most likely, many of them don't. But those that do usually survive for one of three reasons. They may have a good screenplay or interesting plot. They may have big name stars in their early years and before they made it big. Or they may have become cult films.

This movie, "Special Agent K-7" survives for the first reason – an interesting and intriguing story. Period. The best of the acting is just so-so, and some of it gives the hint that it was a no-rehearsal, one- take shoot. The script, directing, cinematography and editing are poor. Most of the technical qualities also suffer.

The story is interesting enough that I wonder if a bigger studio might not have picked it up later, copied it, or done a remake with a top cast and production.

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