IMDb > Crimes at the Dark House (1940)
Crimes at the Dark House
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Crimes at the Dark House (1940) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

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6.3/10   263 votes »
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Down 16% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Wilkie Collins (novel) and
Edward Dryhurst (scenario)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Crimes at the Dark House on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1943 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
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. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
NewsDesk:
Vintage horror and genre historians on DVD
 (From Fangoria. 19 February 2009, 9:46 AM, PST)

User Reviews:
The moral of the story is "Be careful what you wish for". See more (20 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)
Tod Slaughter ... The False Sir Percival Glyde
Sylvia Marriott ... Laurie Fairlie / Anne Catherick
Hilary Eaves ... Marian Fairlie
Geoffrey Wardwell ... Paul Hartwright
Hay Petrie ... Dr. Isidor Fosco
Margaret Yarde ... Mrs. Bullen
Rita Grant ... Jessica, the Maid
David Horne ... Frederick Fairlie
Elsie Wagstaff ... Mrs. Catherick
David Keir ... Lawyer Mr. Merriman
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Grace Arnold ... Maid (uncredited)
Vincent Holman ... Asylum Doctor (uncredited)
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Directed by
George King 
 
Writing credits
Wilkie Collins (novel "The Woman In White")

Edward Dryhurst  scenario
Frederick Hayward  adaptation
H.F. Maltby  dialogue

Produced by
George King .... producer
Odette King .... producer
 
Original Music by
Jack Beaver 
 
Cinematography by
Hone Glendinning  (as Hone Glendining)
 
Film Editing by
Jack Harris 
 
Production Design by
Bernard Robinson 
 
Production Management
Jack Martin .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Hal Mason .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
Harold V. King .... sound recordist (as Harold King)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Harry Rose .... camera operator
 
Music Department
Jack Beaver .... music supervisor (uncredited)
 

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
69 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)

Did You Know?

Goofs:
Anachronisms: 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 »
Soundtrack:
StormSee more »

FAQ

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14 out of 15 people found the following review useful.
The moral of the story is "Be careful what you wish for"., 20 May 2005
Author: reptilicus from Vancouver, Canada

Tod Slaughter. 60 years ago he dominated British B movies, 30 years ago no one remembered him, to-day he is being re-discovered and given the respect he has always deserved. Welcome back Tod! Modern film historians compare him to Boris Karloff and while that is a nice accolade it is not entirely appropriate. If we have to compare Tod to another British screen villain I would choose Lionel Atwill. Oh yes, Boris could be menacingly evil but there was always a motivating force behind him, a drive that so obsessed him he lost sight of everything else (check out THE DEVIL COMMANDS or THE MAN WITH NINE LIVES or even BEFORE I HANG to see what I mean.) Lionel and Tod were evil for no other reason than they simply WANTED to be; they were mean and they liked it!

That having been said now lets discuss this movie. You know you are in for a great time when the picture has only just begun and a killer strikes by hammering a wooden spike into the ear of a sleeping man! That killer is our Tod (what a surprise!) and he impersonates the dead man, Sir Percival Glyde, to take possession of a large inheritance. Trouble rises when Tod discovers he has inherited nothing but a big stack of bills and if he wants to avoid Debtor's Prison he'd better find a rich wife right away! Is that a problem? Not for Tod, he has set his sights on a lovely young maiden in a nearby estate. So what if she is young enough to be his daughter she is rich and who knows, she just might have an . . .er . . . "accident" not long after the wedding.

This is melodrama at its best. The false Sir Percival is hardly inside his manor house before he begins canoodling with a buxom chambermaid. When she informs him that she is expecting his child he leads the gullible girl to the boat dock where he strangles her ("You wanted to be a bride? I'll make you one! A bride of Death! Heh, heh heh!") Meanwhile there is another woman hanging around who claims that Sir Percival is already married . . . to her, and they have a daughter! Honestly stealing a fortune is such a very complicated thing! Tod has to find a way to eliminate them too. Does he? You will find out.

Part of the fun of watching a Tod Slaughter film is seeing just how perversely evil he can be and knowing that at the end his fate will be a fitting one; this movie does not disappoint on any level.

Is this his best film? Some people say so; though my personal favourite is THE FACE AT THE WINDOW. Now sit back, imagine yourself in a British theatre back in the Victorian days and enjoy the show. Feel free to hiss the villain and cheer the hero and heroine. Enjoy!

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