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original title: Scotland Yard Investigator
duration: 1h 8min
tags: SECRETS NEVER BEFORE REVEALED...the thief that rocked the international scene...exposed in a thrilling screen story! (original poster)
keywords: britishnoir, murder, german, monalisa, riverthames, louvremuseum, parisfrance, husbandwiferelationship, grandfathergrandsonrelationship, grandfathergranddaughterrelationship, brothersisterrelationship
Cheers too, for Erich Von Stroheim. What more can one say about him? He was a wonderful director, and a mesmerizing actor as well. He managed to elevate a number of low-budget films, and was wonderful in the "A" films, too. Think "Five Graves to Cairo" and "Sunset Boulevard," for example. His character in that latter film is creepy yet sympathetic- a type he played often, and well. I never get tired of watching him. He often chewed the scenery, but always in such an entertaining way that you have to forgive him.
This is a pretty good Republic effort. It is well written, and it keeps you interested. One thing I really like about the film is in its use of many famous Hollywood character actors. Forrester Harvey, who often played humorous Cockney types, gets more screen time here than usual. And he does a good job as the shady art dealer. Ditto his wife Doris Lloyd, who made a zillion movies. C. Aubrey's wife is played by Eva Moore, who was the creepy sister, Rebecca Femm, in James Whale's classic, "The Old Dark House." She plays a society lady here, and it's hard to believe she's the same actress as in that earlier film. You can also spot Billy Bevan, Victor Varconi, Georges Metaxa, and a number of faces that pop up in many films of the 30s and 40s. That was a great thing about Old Hollywood- there were so many excellent character actors available to the studios. They always added that something extra to the films, and audiences loved seeing them. Try to imagine the classics of that era without them.
For mystery lovers, and fans of the character actors of the studio system- era, this is a gem of a movie. Not really a surprise in this little feature. Republic studios manufactured this kind of products as dozens per month. Not boredom in that story of robbery, counterfeit and intrigue in the art collectors world.
Von Stroheim gives here an acceptable performance as a ruthless collector ready at anything to achieve his purposes, including murder. And he is not the only one. Not action packed movie but still absorbing.
Forget the classic romance between this detective and the girl. Usual clich辿 we unfortunately can't miss. I will say that Aubrey Smith is delightful in the old fellow character.
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