A young woman turns to Sherlock Holmes for protection when she's menaced by an escaped killer seeking missing treasure. However, when the woman is kidnapped, Holmes and Watson must penetrate the city's criminal underworld to find her.
In Paris, a down and out medical student Johann Radek (Franchot Tone) is paid by Bill Kirby (Robert Hutton) to murder his wealthy aunt. A knife grinder (Burgess Meredith) is suspected, but ... See full summary »
In flashback from a 'Rebecca'-style beginning: Ellen Foster, visiting her aunt on the California coast, meets neighbor Jeff Cohalan and his ultramodern clifftop house. Ellen is strongly ... See full summary »
James Houghland, inventor of a new method by which television signals can be instantaneously sent anywhere in the world, refuses to sell the process to television companies, who then send ... See full summary »
This is the twelfth Bulldog Drummond film, the third starring John Howard as Drummond, and the second based on Sapper's novel 'The Third Round' (the first version of which was the silent film of 1925 'Bulldog Drummond's Third Round' starring Jack Buchanan, of which one print is said to survive in an archive). This one is tauter and more dramatic than most because it was edited by Ed Dymtryk. John Hogan also did a fine job of directing, with many dramatic angles and more closeups than were seen in the previous Drummond film by another director. There is interesting second unit material of London. The budget for this film was fairly ambitious, more so than in later efforts. Louise Campbell and Nydia Westman, the two irritating women, are kept under control and their roles minimized, to my great relief, and to the improvement of the drama. The lead billing once again is given to John Barrymore, who plays the Commissioner, but in this film, he acts up a storm and has many strong scenes, unlike the previous offering, 'Bulldog Drummond's Revenge', in which he sleep-walked through the story. So in this one, he really earned his fee for a change. The wonderful character actress Zeffie Tilbury here plays an amusing housekeeper who puts policemen in their place with the best East End cockney applomb, and takes no nonsense. Hogan, having just directed her in 'Scandal Street' (1938), evidently was responsible for introducing Elizabeth Patterson to the series, as a hysterical Aunt Blanche. Porter Hall puts in another of his villainous appearances, to excellent effect. (Villains are always so much more menacing when they speak quietly, as he does.) There are some amazing laboratory scenes in this film, reminiscent of Tesla, with surging electric currents and so forth, and one half expects a Frankenstein monster to appear. The story is about the manufacture of artificial diamonds, of the need to protect the diamond industry and, as Barrymore admits, to protect the Empire, from the threat of being able to make diamonds 'become as cheap as pebbles' and 'to be larger than the crown jewels'. Naturally, there is scope for villains galore with such a scenario. There is lots of action, plenty of train, car and motorbike chases, climbing up walls, and in this one, E. E. Clive as Tenny the gentleman's gentleman has the most energetic and active of all his Drummond roles, and hijacks a truck at gunpoint, hanging upside down from the roof. But most ingenious of all is the cute trained penguin who has more scenes than Louise Campbell and is a finer bird. Watch him hop and squawk, dear little thing. He also discovers a corpse under the table, which was a fine feathered deed worthy of this fast-moving film, which does not disappoint any stout Drummondonian.
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