This B picture was shot in 27 days for $192,000. This was 6 days and $17,000 over the initial budget and due to director Lloyd Corrigan's inexperience and star Boris Karloff's insistence that union rules regarding an 8-hour day be obeyed. See more »
The almighty Boris Karloff is primarily an icon of horror cinema so it's a bit peculiar that this film, which is in no way horror-related, got included in the fancy and recently released Karloff DVD-collection (cover image displayed here on the main page). Personally, I'm glad it's there, as "Night Key" was completely unknown to me and it's always a great pleasure to discover a new film from your favorite actor, especially if it's as amusing and adequately plotted as this film! Boris is once again very convincing as the elderly inventor of burglar alarms who just reached a personal breakthrough with his new system of a beam-based alarm. When he attempts to sell his invention to a major company, the manager slash former business partner robs him for the second time and Mallory develops a plan to get even. By developing a way to crack the old alarm systems, he hopes to sell his new one quicker but unfortunately a gang of mobsters takes quite an interest in his burglary methods "Night Key" is by no means a mesmerizing film, but it benefices from a good pace and excellent acting performances. Apart from Boris, there's the really great acting to admire of Alan Baxter, Ward Bond and Hobart Cavanaugh as a small time crook. It's a fun little film, albeit very politically correct and loaded with clichés and stereotypes.
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