7.5/10
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40 user 12 critic

Who Done It? (1942)

Approved | | Comedy, Film-Noir, Mystery | 6 November 1942 (USA)
Two dumb soda jerks dream of writing radio mysteries. When they try to pitch an idea at a radio station, they end up in the middle of a real murder when the station owner is killed during a broadcast.

Director:

Erle C. Kenton

Writers:

Stanley Roberts (story), Stanley Roberts (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Bud Abbott ... Chick Larkin / Voice of Himself on Radio
Lou Costello ... Mervin Q. Milgrim / Voice of Himself on Radio
Patric Knowles ... Jimmy Turner
William Gargan ... Police Lt. Lou Moran
Louise Allbritton ... Jane Little
Thomas Gomez ... Col. J.R. Andrews
William Bendix ... Detective Brannigan
Don Porter ... Art Fraser
Jerome Cowan ... Marco Heller
Mary Wickes ... Juliet Collins
Ludwig Stössel ... Dr. Anton Marek
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Storyline

Two dumb soda jerks dream of writing radio mysteries. When they try to pitch an idea at a radio station, they end up in the middle of a real murder when the station owner is killed during a broadcast.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 November 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Deux nigauds détectives See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono | Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For a murder mystery set in a radio studio, the film certainly had its share of personalities who themselves were radio actors. Bud Abbott and Lou Costello had been introduced to the nation on "The Kate Smith Hour," and in 1942 when this film was made had their own highly successful radio show. William Bendix (Detective Brannigan) was a bit player in radio at the time, but beginning in 1944 would become famous for his radio show (and later film and television series) The Life of Riley (1953). Walter Tetley (the prankster usher) was an accomplished adult radio actor whose unique voice allowed him to play children roles on a variety of shows, most notably "The Great Gildersleeve" and "The Phil Harris/Alice Faye Show." Finally, William Gargan (Detective Moran) starred in his own radio show, "Barry Craig, Confidential Investigator." See more »

Goofs

When Juliet is telling Mervyn that he can buy her some ice cream after the radio broadcast but that she had to go take care of radio business, her voice is heard but her lips don't move. When she turns around after entering the studio, she says something, but it isn't heard. See more »

Quotes

Mervin Q. Milgrim: I don't mind getting shot; I don't mind getting stabbed; but this here guy, insulted me!
[starts record playing]
Mervin Q. Milgrim: What was that crack about halitosis?
Voice on record: What are you going to do about it?
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A quite shocking radio show
28 December 2005 | by SpondonmanSee all my reviews

This has always been one of my favourite Abbott & Costello's, it's a short, frantic murder mystery with plenty of slapstick routines to keep us fans happy. I think the pace of it all and the average volume of Lou's voice probably puts some people off, but hey they can't really be fans then, can they?

A murder is committed in full view in a radio studio, Bud and Lou are on the case unasked as detectives before the "real" ones show up. There's an odd love interest with Patric Knowles and Louise Allbritton, because he comes into the story, departs gallantly saying he won't take charity from a woman, and after the murder also gets involved unasked. Favourite bits: Watt's a volt; Lou in the "clues closet", Lou crashing through glass windows leaving his fleeing shape and even making an impression on a wall - all complete with hat; Alexander 2222.

The marvellous wartime Universal studio atmosphere pervades with some beautiful shadowy lit shots at the radio station - in fact the A&C films I love best are all from this period, replete with the atmosphere the Universal technicians achieved seemingly so effortlessly then. To a fan: one of their best, to an unbeliever: don't trouble yourself or the fans.


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