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Crimes at the Dark House (1940)

| Drama | 1943 (USA)
A madman kills a man who has just inherited a large estate, then impersonates his victim to gain entrance to the estate so he can murder his enemies.

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(novel), (scenario) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview:
Tod Slaughter ...
Sylvia Marriott ...
Hilary Eaves ...
Geoffrey Wardwell ...
Hay Petrie ...
Margaret Yarde ...
Mrs. Bullen
Rita Grant ...
Jessica, the Maid
...
Elsie Wagstaff ...
David Keir ...
Lawyer Mr. Merriman
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Storyline

A madman murders Sir Percival Glyde. Taking on his victim's identity, the man returns to the Glyde ancestral home, Blackwater Park, in hopes of claiming a large inheritance. However, the estate is heavily in debt. Still hungry for wealth, the false "Glyde" takes advantage of a long-standing betrothal promise to marry young and beautiful heiress Laurie Fairlie. Having his true identity revealed could ruin everything, but this lascivious and diabolical "Glyde" is more than willing to kill anyone who stands in his way... This story is loosely based on Wilkie Collins's The Woman in White. Written by L. Hamre

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Details

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Release Date:

1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lo strangolatore  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

When Marian Fairlie sneezes, Sir Frederick Fairlie complains about her spreading germs. But the story is set in the 1850s, and the germ theory of disease would not be known to the public until the 1870s. See more »

Quotes

The False Percival Glyde: [after tying a noose around his victim's neck] You always said, you were a teetotaler. You're going to have a nice drop, now!
See more »

Connections

Version of Novela: La dama vestida de blanco (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

The Wedding March
(uncredited)
Music by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
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User Reviews

 
Crimes at the Dark House
18 January 2013 | by See all my reviews

This is a superbly wrought English melodrama featuring Tod Slaughter, Britain's one man horror factory. The story, as befits a tale based on a Wilkie Collins novel, is rich in complications, the atmosphere is filled with the same evil mirth as Slaughter's twisted laughter, and the whole thing is rapidly paced, with delicious dialog (by Maltby) and a refreshing outspokenness and brutality lacking in most similar offerings of the 1940's.

Apart from Grant the actors are first rate, even if none of them can compete with Slaughter's diabolical charisma. The brief running time (just over 65 minutes) makes Crimes at the Dark House whistle by, and the scenes that always slow down horror films of this era, that is to say the romantic interludes, occupy only a couple of minutes in this movie, added to which the romantic couple is played by the excellent Marriott and Wardwell. Splendid sets, the right kind of in-your-face horror movie music and a tongue placed firmly in cheek are factors that complete this entertaining production. The English knew what they were doing even before Hammer.


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