Private detective Michael Shayne (Lloyd Nolan) is serving on the jury trying Lillian Hubbard (Janis Carter) for the murder of Harley Forsythe. A witness with information that could clear ... See full summary »
A private detective is hired to retrieve a valuable antique coin that was stolen from its owner by her son, who used it to pay off a blackmailer. The private eye soon finds himself up to ... See full summary »
In order to win back his girlfriend, Mike Shayne promises to give up his detective practice and get a job as riveter in an aircraft plant. He quickly finds himself investigating the theft of industrial diamonds from the plant's safe and, utilizing a variety of false identities, traces them first to a dress factory and later to a Hawaii-bound ocean liner. Escaping several attempts on his life, he is able to uncover a Nazi smuggling ring, but the location of the missing diamonds continues to elude him. Written by
Diamond smugglers lead detective Michael Shayne to shipboard intrigue and danger.
A lively cast, good production values, and an intriguing mystery, add up to a superior entry in the Michael Shayne series. Lloyd Nolan is so good as the brash detective, injecting real spark into his scenes. Ditto the brassy Hughes as his long-suffering girlfriend. But it's really Superman George Reeves who surprises as the mustachioed bon vivant, O'Hara. He's looser and more charming than I've seen himno "Man of Steel" here. And I wonder what became of Helene Reynolds who also shows flair, as a shady lady, but appears to have left the business soon after. Too bad.
Anyway, it's a TCF production, which means even B-pictures get quality attention, as the well stocked crowd scenes show. Plus, the suspense part keeps you guessing, like who's trying to drown Shayne and O'Hara aboard ship a really well thought out and nail-biting sequence. Then too, all the ingredients are wrapped into a neat fast-moving package by director Leeds. In passing-- note how the politics of the diamonds remains curiously unclear. It looks like the movie was produced around Pearl Harbor time, but no mention is made of the Japanese. Instead, Nazi's are mentioned as behind the diamond smuggling, even though America is not yet at war with Hitler. I wonder what the story is here.
Nonetheless, this energetic little programmer still manages a solid degree of entertainment plus.
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