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Mystery Street (1950)

Passed  -  Crime | Drama | Film-Noir  -  28 July 1950 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 1,319 users  
Reviews: 42 user | 19 critic

A small town policeman is assisted by a Harvard professor when the skeletal remains of a pregnant prostitute turn up on a Massachusetts beach.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: Mystery Street (1950)

Mystery Street (1950) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Peter Moralas
Sally Forrest ...
Grace Shanway
...
Dr. McAdoo
...
Mrs. Smerrling
...
Henry Shanway
...
Vivian Heldon
Edmon Ryan ...
James Joshua Harkley
...
Jackie Elcott
Wally Maher ...
Tim Sharkey
Ralph Dumke ...
A Tattooist
Willard Waterman ...
A Mortician
Walter Burke ...
An Ornithologist
Don Shelton ...
A District Attorney
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Storyline

Vivian, a B-girl working at "The Grass Skirt," is being brushed off by her rich, married boyfriend. To confront him, she hijacks drunken customer Henry Shanway and his car from Boston to Cape Cod, where she strands Henry...and is never seen again. Months later, a skeleton is found (sans clothes or clues) on a lonely Cape Cod beach. Using the macabre expertise of Harvard forensic specialist Dr. McAdoo, Lt. Pete Morales must work back from bones to the victim's identity, history, and killer. Will he succeed in time to save an innocent suspect? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 July 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Murder at Harvard  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Joseph Losey and later Harold F. Kress were announced to direct before John Sturges was ultimately assigned. See more »

Goofs

Length of the chain connecting phone book to wall phone in boarding house varies from scene to scene. See more »

Quotes

Jim Black, tattooist: Know her? Sure, I knew her. I was never close enough to smell her perfume, but I knew her!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Mystery Street: Murder at Harvard (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Love of My Life
(uncredited)
Music by Cole Porter
Played by the band at the Grass Skirt
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Great movie for ELSA fans --- good movie all around!
18 December 2004 | by (my sofa) – See all my reviews

First of all .... ELLLLLLLSSSSSAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If you're an Elsa Lanchester fan, you've got to see this movie. Although she is fourth in the billing, I'd say she's on screen second in amount of time only to Ricardo Montalban. And, she plays her character wonderfully: a scheming, not-so-nice landlady! ELSA ROCKS!

Small aside: Thank goodness for Tivo's "wish list" feature and Turner Classic Movies! This movie came up during my Elsa Lanchester wish list search. Otherwise, I might never have seen it.

OK, back to the movie: I recorded it because of Elsa, and for that reason only. I was pleasantly surprised that I actually enjoyed the movie. It's a murder mystery, and Ricardo Montalban plays a young lieutenant trying to find the murderer. For 1950, I thought the detail of forensic information they went into was pretty good ... CSI fans might laugh or find it charmingly quaint, but I don't recall any other "noir" type of films that I've seen from this era talk about forensic details to the extent that this film does.

I won't spoil the movie, but there are two scenes I'd like to comment on:

1) While Ricardo Montalban is searching the office of a snobby Cape Cod blue blood, the blue blood (Mr. Harkley) says to him, "The Harkleys have been here since before this land became known as the United States. I can tell by your accent that you've been here less than one generation." (or words to that effect). RM shoots him a great look, then has a great parting shot when he leaves Mr. Harkley's office.

2) VERY BRIEFLY, say 60 seconds at the most, Ricardo Montalban is working out by himself in a squash or handball court. A very yummy shot if, like me, you are only familiar with the older "Kahn" (Star Trek) or "Fantasy Island" Ricardo Montalban. Rrrrowwwr!

Summary: Good movie. Good story. Good acting. ELLLLLSSSSSSAAAAAAA!!!!!!! I recommend seeing it if you can.

(Sadly, I just checked Amazon and I don't see this movie as being available for sale on either DVD or VHS. Scan your Turner Classic Movie listings for this. I'm sure they'll play it again. Or plug it into your wish list if you have a Tivo. And if you don't have a Tivo then get one! (No, I'm not an employee of Tivo nor a shareholder! Just a huge Tivo fan!))

My rating = 8/10


26 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Fate of the Landlady irvberg2002
Latino awareness ahead of its time? wgregh
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One of the best chase climaxes in noir danielj_old999
C.S.I. back in the 50s richsass
Did Harvard fund this movie sjankis630
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