A mystery writer accused of murdering his publisher sets out to discover the real killer.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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William Forrest ...
Henry Small
Sid Tomack ...
Mike Foster - Bartender
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Elevator Operator
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Detective - Applegate's Assistant
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Storyline

A down-and-nearly-out writer makes a drunken visit to the office of his publisher, who turns up dead shortly afterward, and the writer is unable to prove his innocence. But with the aid of the publisher's secretary, and a fellow-writer -- maybe or maybe not -- he finds the guilty person. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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ON THE SPOT---FOR MURDER! (original print ad-all caps) See more »


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Approved | See all certifications »
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6 February 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Inside Story  »

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(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Stylish mystery with Chester Morris as hard-boiled writer of highbrow fiction
18 April 2012 | by (Minnesota) – See all my reviews

A neat set up: Chester Morris is an author of "serious" books. He hates his publisher, but is forced to go to him and ask for an advance. Having worked up his nerve by downing several drinks, Morris arrives at the office to find the publisher in conference with a popular mystery writer—whom Morris promptly insults as a writer of pap. Writing a mystery is simple work, Morris drunkenly insists…he could invent a murder plot in a snap. A murder in a locked room.

Some hours later, the publisher is found dead….murdered in his locked office. And Morris can't quite remember two things—the locked room murder plot he had invented, and whether or not he actually did the murder. He sets about investigating—but it's not easy with the police figuring him as the prime suspect.

Morris is very good, especially after his character sobers up and we can watch him piece together events and the motives and actions of other characters. (During the first fifteen minutes his slurring and stumbling get a bit tiresome….as drunk people tend to do.)

Steven Geray is fun as the rival author; his thick accent adds to his vaguely exotic and sinister aura. Constance Dowling is hard and slick as a possibly dangerous blonde—the publisher's secretary who eventually teams up with Morris. She may be seeking the truth; she may be running away from it. Both the mystery writer and the secretary have their own reasons for wishing that publisher ill.

The film develops some great situations—like when Morris and Dowling meet up in his dark basement apartment, each thinking the other committed the murder. Some great camera shots: she steps slowly from the shadows, pausing where all is dark except her ankles in the light. Some cheesy but undeniably fun dialog: thinking she's trying to fool him with romance, Chester tells the girl, "You've got the wrong chump. Violins hurt my ears. And when the temperature's up I drink a bottle of beer…."

An excellent B mystery that moves fast, contains plenty of suspense and never takes itself more seriously than a murder mystery should.

"Do you really think I killed Small?" – A pause, then a hard kiss, finally an answer.... "Yes."


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