Paul, a young man whose father was once lieutenant Governor of California before his untimely death, has a strange, recurring dream in which his mother falls in love with a dangerous man (... See full summary »
A man accidentally kills his fiancée as he exits a train. Just as the train pulls out, he drops her body on the rear platform. No one saw him do it, but someone does see him at the otherwise deserted station: a mischievous, freckle-faced boy. Later, he's walking along a road when the town's newspaper editor stops and gives him a lift. The editor tells his passenger that a flood has washed out the bridge. For now, there's no way out of town, so he takes the stranger to a boarding house. Fate decrees that of all houses, this is the one where the boy lives. The boy thinks he recognizes the new boarder. The new boarder thinks it's time to get rid of the boy. And a sexy blonde living at the house thinks it's time to run off with a man she knows is a murderer.Written by
In the style of Edgar G. Ulmer's Detour, Inner Sanctum is a cheap little film noir, and one that gains all of it's successes from its plot rather any technical elements. The main problem with this film, therefore, is simply that there isn't enough of it; and while the plot and characters that we get introduced to are good, they could have been a whole lot better if the film had more of a budget to play with. The plot focuses on the idea of guilt and its effect on a man that has killed someone. We follow Harold Dunlap, a man that decides to stay at a boarding house after killing a woman at a near-by station. The plot focuses on the interloper, as well as the people already living at the house; and all the thrills are garnered through that. The film is tense and exciting, and it's also a good indication of how times have changed; I mean, would you let your kid sleep in a room that is currently being inhabited by a male guest that you've only just met? Well, you would if it was this kid; as Inner Sanctum features what is probably the most irritating child performance of all time. But aside from that, the cast is strong and the film is well directed by Lew Landers, who also directed Bela Lugosi and Boris Karloff in The Raven some years earlier. Recommended to noir fans.
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