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Mystery of the 13th Guest (1943)

5.3
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Ratings: 5.3/10 from 180 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 2 critic

A woman of twenty-one opens her grandfather's will left to her thirteen years earlier, per his instructions. Murder soon follows.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Title: Mystery of the 13th Guest (1943)

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Cast

Cast overview:
Dick Purcell ...
Johnny Smith
Helen Parrish ...
Marie Morgan
Tim Ryan ...
Police Lt. Burke
...
Speed Dugan
Johnny Duncan ...
Harold Morgan (as John Duncan)
John Dawson ...
Tom Jackson (as Jon Dawson)
Addison Richards ...
Jim, District Attorney
Jacqueline Dalya ...
Marjory Morgan
Cyril Ring ...
Barksdale
Paul McVey ...
Adam Morgan
Lloyd Ingraham ...
Grandfather Morgan
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Storyline

The Morgan family's patriarch is soon to die. He hosts a dinner party for the family to tell them all he's setting aside his last will to be opened by his nearly 8-year-old granddaughter thirteen years in the future when she turns twenty-one. Thirteen years later, she returns to the abandoned family house to open the will, per his instructions. Murder follows shortly thereafter. Police Lt. Burke and Private Investigator Johnny Smith are soon on hand to investigate when guests of the old dinner party thirteen years earlier seem to be bumped off according to the past seating arrangement. Written by statmanjeff

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

DEATH PLAYS HOST! (original poster-all caps) See more »

Genres:

Crime | Mystery

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 November 1943 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

It's never said who raises young Marie. Surrounded by aunts, uncles, cousins, a brother, a grandfather and the grandfather's lawyer, she and her brother are supposedly orphans, although this is never said. Why the grandfather favors his granddaughter over his grandson is also a mystery. In that he's soon to die, it's curious who becomes her guardian over the next thirteen years (since it's a good guess her grandfather has been watching out for her and won't be around to protect her). See more »

Quotes

Grandfather Morgan: I suppose you're all wondering why I left my sickbed to play host to this little family gathering. The reason is, I have a great deal to tell all of you. First - and, no doubt, this will be good news to you - my doctors tell me I haven't very long to live.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Thirteenth Guest (1932) See more »

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User Reviews

If You Enjoy the Genre.....
4 December 2010 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

Mystery of the 13th Guest, The (1943)

** 1/2 (out of 4)

Decent "B" movie about a family getting together for the eldest to announce that his will won't be read for another thirteen years after his granddaughter turns twenty-one. Thirteen years later the guests at that party start turning up dead so it's up to a private detective (Dick Purcell) and a Police Lt. (Tim Ryan) to figure out who's doing the killings. If you're looking for high art then you're not going to find it here but if you're looking for an hour to kill with some light entertainment then you might find this Monogram quickie entertaining. Old 'One Shot' Beaudine certainly doesn't do anything overly special with this murder-mystery but he at least keeps the pace up so that the brief 60-minutes go by quickly and without too much dead space. The screenplay itself certainly doesn't try to do anything ground breaking but it keeps the characters interesting and the murderer under wraps until the very end, which is pretty much all you can ask for out of a film like this. Purcell does a pretty good job with his role and makes the fast-talking wise guy fun to watch. His back-and-forth banter with Ryan is pretty entertaining and Helen Parrish makes for a good female lead. Frank Faylen plays the dimwitted cop and gets a few laughs. The rest of the cast are serviceable and give pretty much what you'd expect out of them. The mystery itself is a pretty good one as I found the murder weapon (an electrical wire attached to a phone) to be quite fun and all the horror trappings like the mysterious hidden doors and traps to help keep things moving. No one is ever going to mistake this film for a classic but if you're a fan of the genre then you'll know that there's much worse out there.


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