The Thirteenth Hour (1947)

Article 2875 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 3-22-2009
Posting Date: 6-27-2009
Directed by William Clemens
Featuring Richard Dix, Karen Morley, John Kellogg
Country: USA

The boss of a small trucking firm ends up at odds with a police officer who is his rival for the affection of the woman who runs the local diner. The rivalry intensifies when the policeman tickets the trucker for drunk driving and causes him to lose his license. The trucker is then forced to take it on the lam when he is framed for the murder of the policeman.

Though it isn’t apparent from the title, this is another entry in “The Whistler” series of movies, and, like many of the others, the shadowy figure of the Whistler (who serves as our narrator) is the sole fantastic element in the movie. Still, this is one dandy little B movie, with Richard Dix capturing our sympathy as an everyman who gets caught up in a situation that is over his head, and which eventually leads to a diamond smuggling operation. The script is quite strong. I like that the characters here act with intelligence; when our hero is forced to write a note to his fiancee, he manages to find a way to clue her in to the true nature of his situation by writing a comment that seems quite innocent on the surface, for example. One really gets the sense of paranoia and oppression of being on the lam as well. “The Whistler” was one of the better B-Movie series out there, and this entry in the series is one of the reasons why.


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