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The scrap of the Shakespeare manuscript is priceless. Nick Torrent owns it and is selling it. But then he is murdered and the manuscript is stolen. Joel Sloane is a rare book dealer and part time detective. Since he was trying to buy the manuscript for Mr. Oates, he is a suspect so he tries to solve the case. As the bodies pile up, Joel must solve the case or else Garda will be wearing black. Written by
Tony Fontana <email@example.com>
In the scene with the safe when Reginald Owen's arm is extended, its position changes. See more »
[Referring to Sloane's inappropriate tirade]
I must apologize for Wilkes, Mr. Sloane. He's been librarian here so long he probably imagines this is his property. Poor chap! I think he's beginning to lose his mind.
It was a hundred miles away a minute ago.
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Robert Montgomery and Rosalind Russell just fit their roles as Joel and Garda Sloane, witty rare book dealers who dabble in detective work on the side. The book business is apparently not that good Montgomery wishes that somebody would steal a lot of rare books so he could recover them and get the reward. Also, detective work is a lot more fun than book selling.
The plot, which gets rolling quickly, involves a Shakespeare manuscript and a Paradise Lost first edition, as well as a rival book dealer, an absent-minded client, and some family intrigue. As Russell sums up neatly at one point: "What a spot for that girl. Her father murdered and her brother and her sweetheart probably all mixed up in it." It's fairly complicated but the story moves along plenty fast enough that we don't have much time to wonder whether it makes sense.
The banter between Montgomery and Russell is the picture's main attraction, and both stars are appealing and funny. The supporting cast is also good and features such familiar faces as Reginald Owen and Ralph Morgan.
It's no masterpiece but never boring for a minute; it's certainly a solid entry in the husband-and-wife-amateur-detectives genre.
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