A beautiful showgirl, name "the Canary" is a scheming nightclub singer. Blackmailing is her game and with that she ends up dead. But who killed "the Canary". All the suspects knew and were ... See full summary »
At the end of each year, the extremely wealthy but odious Greene family gets together at the spooky old family castle to establish terms of a will, though they despise each other. This year... See full summary »
The zany plot follows nitwit Gracie Allen trying to help master sleuth Philo Vance solve a murder. Allen's uncle fixes her up with Bill at a company picnic. When the two go out to a ... See full summary »
The murders start with the body of Robin. He is found with a arrow through the heart, but Vance deduces that the body was placed and not found where he was killed. The note found dealing with the murder was part of a nursery rhyme and signed by 'Bishop'. The only witness may have been Mrs. Drukker and Adolph, but they are not talking. As the murders progress, each one is accompanied by a nursery rhyme. It is up to Philo Vance to unravel the clues and unmask the identity of the murderer 'Bishop'.Written by
Tony Fontana <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This film received its initial television showings in Philadelphia Monday 25 March 1957 on WFIL (Channel 6), followed by New Haven CT 8 April 1957 on WNHC (Channel 8), by Chicago 25 May 1957 on WBBM (Channel 2), by Amarillo 18 June 1957 on KFDA (Channel 10), by Norfolk VA 19 June 1957 on WTAR (Channel 3), by New York City 1 July 1957 on WCBS (Channel 2), by Lubbock TX 4 August 1957 on KCBD (Channel 11), by Tucson 9 August 1957 on KVOA (Channel 4), by Hartford CT 2 September 1957 on WHCT (Channel 18), by Cincinnati 28 October 1957 on WLW-T (Channel 5), by Columbus 5 November 1957 on WLW-C (Channel 4), by Portland OR 22 November 1957 on KGW (Channel 8), by Indianapolis 25 November 1957 on WLW-I (Channel 13), by Durham NC 3 December 1957 on WTCD (Channel 11), by both Spokane and Honolulu 9 December 1957 on KHQ (Channel 6) and on KHVH (Channel 13), by Omaha 3 February 1958 on WOW (Channel 6), and by San Francisco 19 May 1958 on KGO (Channel 7). Obviously, despite its advanced age, it was a wide spread popular local favorite but no reliable documentation has yet been found confirming it was ever telecast in Los Angeles at this time. Now, comfortably residing in the TCM library, it's a frequent and welcome visitor to cable TV viewers on Turner Classic Movies. See more »
When the camera follows Carroll Nye to the left side of the rock in the park where he is murdered, there is obviously a cut before his head falls into camera range as the shadows change. See more »
[to Markham and Heath]
You know, gentlemen, this is no ordinary case. We cannot proceed in an ordinary manner. Mark my words, this is not a single murder that we are trying to solve. It is the beginning of a series of murders... ghastly and inhuman!
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S. S. Van Dine's socialite detective is brought to film for the third time - this time having Basil Rathbone play Philo Vance. While I will not argue with some of the critical assertions that the film is static, stationary, and decidedly creaky, not too mention very far-fetched and predictable, The Bishop Murder Case was made in 1930 when sound was just coming into its own. That is very evident in this film as much of the dialog is hard to hear and comprehend. The stationary microphone was used throughout with director Nick Grinde using lots of expansive scenes with the actors standing around the screened microphone as was the case for sound pictures then. That being said, the film is a pretty decent detective mystery for its time. Rathbone makes an affable Vance. His character is given little depth, however. The mystery, while not entirely and sufficiently explained to me has some things going for it with red herrings involving chess pieces, archery, Ibsen plays, and murders emulating nursery rhymes of a kind. While Grinde directs with the limitations at hand, I did like some of his wide shots. The balcony of the building scene when the professor discovers a man killed by an arrow looked quite impressive, and you can see some wide shots that most definitely mirror German film expressionism of the 1920s with some large, long windows shot in the backdrops of several scenes. All the actors are competent with some real nice character turns by the likes of Charles Quartermaine as a chess expert, George F. Marion as a hunchbacked pseudo-intellectual, James Donlan as a police sergeant(giving the film some of its much needed light moments), and Roland Young, Cosmo Topper himself, turning in a sly, witty performance as a possible suspect. The script is unfortunately riddled with too much ambiguity to make any real sense, but when all is said and done, The Bishop Murder case is mildly entertaining - again making consideration for the time it was made.
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