A Shriek in the Night

January 17, 2016 at 7:40 pm (5 Heads, A Shriek in the Night) (, , , , )

A Shriek in the Night – 1933 – United States

In A Shriek in the Night’s opening scene, a millionaire dies after plummeting from his penthouse balcony. Police investigate and discover three suffocated corpses in the same condo building. A pair of spunky newspaper reporters team up to crack the case, and a romance forms between them. All the victims were somehow connected to a ruthless mobster, and were killed for revenge. The murderer is the building’s janitor, who asphyxiates people by pumping gas through their radiators.

A Shriek in the Night has mystery, suspense, and comedy, but does none of them especially well. The plot offers too few clues. The murderer lacks clear motivation. And the faceless victims are irrelevant to the mystery. The comedic bits are not really funny, but the snappy dialogue amuses. Actors Ginger Rogers and Lyle Talbot are excellent as the two reporters, and their sassy personalities are endearing.

Rating: 5/10 Shrunken Heads. The film’s first shot shows a cheap looking dummy falling off a building. I am unsure if this is a good or bad way to start a movie.

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