When Boston Blackie's private detective friend Joe Kenyon is killed in an auto crash under suspicious circumstances, Blackie makes an offer to Mrs. Kenyon to take his place as a guard at a party given by the wealthy Mrs. Carter, who owns one of the world's most expensive pearl necklaces. His friend Runt goes along also. The necklace disappears while Mrs. Carter, accompanied by her dancing instructor Igor Borio, entertains her guests. Inspector Farraday is called in and finds (not to his great surprise as Blackie is always his first suspect) the pearls in Blackie's pocket. Blackie and the Runt make a hasty exit. Searching the apartment of Mrs. Carter's niece Doris Bradley, Blackie finds the pearls again, hidden in the lining of a coat belonging to Doris' friend Joan Howell who had been at the party and is in love with Borio. Investigating Borio, Blackie learns that the dancer's secretary, Sandra Doray, was connected with a jewel robbery in the south. He sets a trap for them, only to ... Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
Solid mystery boasts dense plot, goes light on the humor
Blackie and the Runt fill in as party security as a favor to the widow of their recently killed friend. Not surprisingly, a valuable necklace is stolen; it's not the first time that helping a friend has gotten them into trouble. Also not surprisingly, Inspector Farraday is on the caseand pins the job on Blackie the moment he sees through the Runt's swami disguise. (They were doing the job undercover and in costume.)
From there on, Trapped by Boston Blackie is unpredictable if not surprisingthe plot involves a ballet instructor, his student, a secretary, the necklace's owner, and said owner's niece and husband. Lots of characters to keep straight! Indeed, it takes Blackie (with Farraday in pursuit, naturally) the length of the picture to sort them all out, restore order along with the necklace, and once again prove his own innocence to the inspector.
Sidekicks Runt and Sergeant Matthews are along as always; neither is quite so dumb as usual in this entry, although Farraday is driven to deliver his trademark exasperated shout ("Matthews!") more than once.
Plenty of disguises for Blackie and the Runt in this onetheir turn as an elderly couple has to be one of their best ever, with the Runt quite hilariously convincing as "Mother." (Blackie even teases "her" about walking past the police wearing a borrowed wrap: "You think the boys are gonna notice an old hag like you? Now get your bonnet." To which the Runt snaps, "Well, I like that!" in perfect insulted-mature-lady style.)
The plot here is thicker than some films in the Boston Blackie series; the humor is (mostly) less physical and lower key. That said, however, it's still a Blackie picture: light and enjoyable, a fast-moving 67 minutes that will relax and amuse more than confuse or confound. Blackie fans will want to catch it at least once.
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