Preview Murder Mystery (1936)

Article #755 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 4-9-2003
Posting Date: 9-6-2003
Directed by Robert Florey
Featuring Reginald Denny, Frances Drake, Gail Patrick

The actor in a remake of “Song of the Toreador” is receiving threatening notes telling him he will not live to see the preview of the movie.

About two-thirds the way through my copy of this movie the videotape started doing some bizarre stuttering that made it somewhat difficult to watch, but I was able to see enough to figure out what was going on (though I do know that I’ll have to search for an upgrade in the future). It’s a bit of a shame; this is a very enjoyable mystery, well directed by Robert Florey, and with a cast that features the heroine of MAD LOVE and one-time DRACULA hopeful Ian Keith. It’s a little predictable at times; I saw one murder and one murder attempt being set up before they actually occur, but the ending has some quite satisfying twists that send it a little ways into the horror genre.

One question, though; at one point, a man suspects that a mouse has been eating some of the cheese on his desk. He then sets up an elaborate system with a camera and an assortment of strings in order to get a picture of the mouse. My question is in two parts: a) Why didn’t he just use a mousetrap?, and b) what was he going to do with the picture of the mouse; blackmail him?


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