5.7/10
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22 user 2 critic

Shadows on the Stairs (1941)

Approved | | Drama, Mystery, Romance | 1 March 1941 (USA)
Occupants of a London boarding house become suspects as a string of murders are discovered.

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(screen play), (from the play by)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Tom Armitage
...
...
Ram Singh
Charles Irwin ...
Constable
...
Lucy
Mary Field ...
Miss Snell
Paul Renay ...
...
Watchman (scenes deleted) (as Sidney Bracy)
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Storyline

Occupants of a London boarding house become suspects as a string of murders are discovered.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Mystery | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 March 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Murder on the Second Floor  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(Turner library print)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The play originally opened in New York on 11 September 1929. See more »

Goofs

(at around 37 mins) A constable has a notepad and pencil in his hands writing down details as he questions two ladies and a gentlemen. As the ladies go downstairs, the constable tucks the notepad in his belt as he briefly turns his back to the camera, watching the ladies leave. He, immediately, turns back to the camera to question the gentleman and now has the notepad and pencil in his hands as before, without reaching for it in his belt. See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: LONDON 1937 See more »

Connections

Referenced in Pretty Little Liars: Now You See Me, Now You Don't (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Comin' Thro' the Rye
(uncredited)
Music Traditional
Words by Robert Burns
Sung a cappella by Charles Irwin at the end
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User Reviews

 
Fun old dark house mystery
12 July 2016 | by See all my reviews

SHADOWS ON THE STAIRS is an acceptable and light murder mystery from the era which is worthy of Agatha Christie or one of her imitators. It's an American production masquerading as a British one, although I admit the accents had me fooled, but the extra budget means that the camera-work is better and the film is of a higher visual quality throughout than to be expected.

The action is centred in and around a boarding house occupied by a number of guests, all of whom have their own motives and machinations. It's almost like the board game Cluedo put up on screen. After a time, one of the leading players is found murdered in his own bedroom, so the police investigate and learn one of the other inhabitants is responsible.

There are some solid mystery elements included in the film, particularly my favourite moment with the spooky figure in the black shawl who goes creeping in and out of rooms. Unfortunately some of the acting - particularly on the part of the female cast members - is rather overdone and histrionic at times. But there's a solid denouement and good work from the likes of character actor Turhan Bey, which keep you glued to the screen.


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