In this adaptation of Dashiell Hammett's "The Farewell Murder", Nick and Nora (and their dog Asta) visit the estate of Col. MacFay, who is being threatened by a mysterious man wanting revenge for a past injustice. When MacFay is murdered, that man is the obvious suspect- maybe too obvious... Written by
Ken Yousten <email@example.com>
Horace McMahon and Harry Bellaver were also costars in the series, The Naked City. See more »
Keep a close eye on the steamer trunks at the train station in the opening scene. Three large all-white trunks are transported from the station to the hotel room where Nick and Nora are staying. But when the delivery men bring the white trunks into the room, they place them next to two more steamer trunks which are already there, and these are a darker color with several strips. At the 5:30 mark, Nora begins to struggle with the latches on one of the darker trunks with strips. But when Nick comes to her aid, the trunk is suddenly one of white ones! Thirty seconds later, after the chauffeur comes in, the trunk is the dark one with the strips again, and the white trunks are well off to the left. See more »
Oh, Linda Mills. A young girl, very pretty.
West Indies Club Drunk:
That's the one. Cute lookin' doll, I guess, under all that warpaint. But, plenty tough.
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I hadn't seen this one before, probably the thought of the Charles' with a baby tagging along worried me. But although he formed a double act with Asta for the first half by the time the plot went into overdrive he was virtually ditched. And I've not come across this Hammett story, but with the comedy turned up to maximum there is so much going on in here I'm amazed it all got squeezed into 98 minutes. The complete box-set print is absolutely pristine and gleamingly atmospheric as was only achievable with nitrate stock.
The plot you can liken to a game of keeping a ball in the air, the members of the cast who let it drop to the ground get murdered. It's impossible to explain the complexities of it all - in short Nick's trying to prevent a murder, then trying to catch the murderer - from a dizzying array of suspects. This is Red Herring City, right up to the very end when Nick unmasked the surprise murderer and even the housekeeper's motives are explained in a dismissive sentence - but not corroborated. If you want to work out whodunnit for yourself my advice is keep a very open mind! If you don't like whodunnits at all watch this solely for the astonishing dance routine by Rene & Estela - Fred & Ginger were awkward in comparison!
I'm going to have to watch this again, soon and sober to tie up some of the threads I lost along the way. I noticed Nick hardly drank at all in here - was that Hays Office pressure? All in all not quite as good as the first two but still one Hell of a ride!
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