A blind detective and his seeing-eye dog investigate a murder and discover a Nazi plot.A blind detective and his seeing-eye dog investigate a murder and discover a Nazi plot.A blind detective and his seeing-eye dog investigate a murder and discover a Nazi plot.
Unfortunately, the actor turns up dead, and Barbara sees not only his dead body, but her stepmother, when she arrives at the man's apartment. Norma goes running to Mac for help. He sets out to find the killer, and it leads him into a web of espionage.
Nice job by Zinnemann, who was just starting out, though he didn't like doing the film except for working with Ann Harding and Donna Reed. As others have mentioned, his pitch black gun battle with the only light coming from the fired shots is most effective and portends the great things to come from him. Overall, it's an okay story, well done.
Edward Arnold does an excellent job (though Zinnemann said he kept blowing his lines) as the smart and likable blind detective, who is aided by an assistant (Allen Jenkins) and his dog Friday, who looks to be a German shepherd mix. Friday is unbelievable - what an actor and athlete! That dog had some training. Zimmemann didn't agree. Friday, who was descended from a silent dog star named Flash, apparently was only good for one take, becoming bored easily. In fact, Friday's only film appearances are in the two Duncan Maclain films. Besides Reed, one can spot Rosemary DeCamp as Vera the maid, Stanley Ridges as the butler, Stephen McNally as Vera's husband Gabriel, Mantan Moreland as Mac's butler, and I honestly thought Katherine Emery WAS Mercedes MacCambridge. Wow! Even the speaking voice.
This was intended as a series for MGM, but the studio only made one other. Universal took the fat man detective series from the radio and made a film with J. Scott Smart with an early appearance by Rock Hudson directed by William Castle, but never followed it up. Nevertheless, there's something about these fat detectives, going back to Nero Wolfe, I guess, that's appealing.
Enjoyable. Glad Friday was able to keep his date after all.
- May 17, 2009