Nicholas Rood, dishonest mine owner, finds a Black Doll on his desk and knows that vengeance is about to overtake him for murdering his former partner. He is knifed as he talks to his ... See full summary »
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Railroaded to an insane asylum twenty years ago by four men who had taken over his newspaper, Lucius Marplay, publisher of the London Sun, escapes with the sole intent of murdering the four... See full summary »
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Nicholas Rood, dishonest mine owner, finds a Black Doll on his desk and knows that vengeance is about to overtake him for murdering his former partner. He is knifed as he talks to his daughter Marian. She summons her fiancé Nick Halstead, a private detective. He finds that six people had a motive for the murder; Rood's sister Mrs. Laura Leland; her son Rex; Rood's associates Mallison and Walling; Esteban, a servant and Dr. Giddings. Sheriff Renick and his deputy Red get the clues all mixed up, but Nick finally narrows the search down to one suspect... Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
A Crime Club Mystery. In 1937, Universal had acquired the rights to select 4 books from the publisher of the pulp whodunits' annual output of 52 novels. This was the second one produced in the deal. A total of 11 Crime Club mysteries would be filmed. The Crime Club deal ended with the release of The Witness Vanishes (1939) in September, 1939. See more »
Because they have good casts and a nice dosage of humor, I like the Crime Club murder mysteries and this entry is no exception. The wealthy and overbearing Nicholas Rood finds a Mexican voodoo like black doll on his desk. According to Rood's butler, this signifies an impending death. And sure enough, Rood is killed by a thrown knife. There are suspects galore - among them Rood's sister and wife, the butler and two former partners from whom Rood has been hiding for several years. Rood's daughter and clever boyfriend (the charming Nan Grey and the ever affable Donald Woods) take the lead in the investigation, which is a good thing because the cops investigating the crime, Sheriff Renick and his deputy are pretty dimwitted to say the least. Edgar Kennedy as the Sheriff provides most of the welcome humor. In fact, Kennedy has one of my all time favorite stupid remarks. He says to Woods, "I know something you don't know." "What?" "You're standing on my foot." Even with lines like this, it' a fun and an entertaining movie. Interesting to me is that Holmes Herbert who starred in a number of silent films has the role of Dr. Giddings in this movie. Herbert never rose above character roles in sound films.
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