Publisher Martin Jamison sends for Philo Vance as he wants to hire him as a technical advisor on the crime stories he publishes. Paul Morgan, Morgan's partner, regards the plan as foolish. ... See full summary »
An ex-military accountant is recruited by the FBI to infiltrate the mob in Chicago in an attempt to break open the rackets. To complicate his job, two women stand in his way, each with their own agenda.
A man is found murdered, with witnesses convinced about the woman they saw leaving his apartment. However, it becomes apparent that the woman has a twin, and finding out which one is the killer seems impossible.
Olivia de Havilland,
When a troupe of showgirls with their impresario and press agent vacation at a Malibu Beach resort, two of them are garroted. Charlie takes on the case assisted by Number Two Son Jimmy and faithful chauffeur Birmingham Brown.
Victor Sen Yung
A beautiful showgirl, nicknamed 'the Canary', is a scheming nightclub singer. Blackmailing is her game and soon ends up dead. But who killed 'the Canary'. All the suspects who knew her had ... See full summary »
Private Detective Philo Vance (Alan Curtis) gets involved with a succession of murders and a mystery concerning the disappearance of an emerald that has been smuggled into the United States. The first victim is the smuggler, Jeffrey Connor ('Dan Seymour (I)' qv)), who intended to double-cross his partners, one of which didn't appreciate Connor's intentions.Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
above average PRC detective mystery; Curtis is excellent
This is one of the two Philo Vance films starring Alan Curtis made during the waning days of PRC Pictures (see my review of the other one, PHILO VANCE'S SECRET MISSION). During this period, PRC was also making a series of Michael Shayne films starring Hugh Beaumont, and the Vance films are not unlike those (neither the Vance nor Shayne characters are much like their literary versions, but forget about that and just accept the films on their own terms and you'll enjoy them much more). Alan Curtis played both comedy (Buck Privates, Sue My Lawyer, etc.) and drama (High Sierra, Hitler's Madmen) equally well in his other work, and that skill allows him to be both convincingly tough and effortlessly witty, as this detective character requires. Terry Austin is a seductive but dangerous femme fetale, And PRC regular Frank Jenks is once again the lovable sidekick. The mystery has some clever angles (I like the cold cream and candy dispenser elements... you'll see what I mean in the actual film), there are a number of red herrings thrown in along the way to make things more interesting, and the climax is exciting. Curtis is an excellent Vance and I'm sorry he did not make more Philo Vance films. Still, the two we have are both very good for fans of gritty but witty low-budget, post-World War II detective films and are worth finding.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this