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William C. McGann
Banker Hubert Kingery invites fellow officers to his hunting lodge only to announce that one of them has forged critical company documents. Later, he is found shot to death, apparently at his own hand. His daughter, Gwen, is the only one who does not believe it was suicide. She asks help from aunt's nurse, Sarah, who suggests her detective boyfriend, Lance, for the task. When he arrives, he's not sure the death was not a suicide after all. But as he investigates the few available clues, he tries to sort fact from fallacy.Written by
... in this short feature based on the old Mignon Eberhart book The Mystery of Hunting's End. A wealthy financier asks a bunch of associates up to his hunting lodge. There he tells them the only way to save the corporation is to use the value of the stock that each of them has. They push back at this for various reasons, some of them saying that the stock is all they have in the way of finances. The banker pulls his trump card and says that they will either let him use the stock to save the company or he will expose one of them as an embezzler. Then he goes to bed.
Shortly thereafter, a shot rings out and the financier is found shot dead in his locked bedroom, a gun near his body. The death is ruled a suicide over the daughter's protest that her father would not end his own life. The nurse (Ann Sheridan), who is caring for the dead financier's wheelchair bound sister, recommends her boyfriend, Lance (Dick Purcell), as a dependable P.I. So the daughter hires the P.I. and invites everybody who was there at the time of her father's murder to the hunting lodge again. None of them can decline because they know they will look guilty.
The P.I. is on hand to try to solve the case. There are some murders among the group as well as some near misses, a shadowy figure traipsing around in the snow outside of the house and peering into windows, the disappearance of some rat poison, and the radio mysteriously just stops working. And why is crippled old aunt Lucy so adamant about not investigating her own brother's death? Watch and find out.
This is only an hour long, and even though it has no time for character development whatsoever, or even the development of any significant Thin Man style clues to help the audience, it has great atmosphere. It does seem though that the entire cast is running from one room to another as someone screams or someone else is shot dead, so there really is no room for much conversation in the face of all of this activity.
Not bad for what was probably a second feature, and Ann Sheridan stands out among the largely anonymous cast.
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