Supernatural (1933)

supernatural 1933

Fun early horror movie with future screen legends Carole Lombard and Randolph Scott. Can a murderess still kill after death?

Ruth Rogen (Vivienne Osborne) has a habit of killing off her boyfriends. She’s up to three by strangulation before she’s betrayed to the cops by phony spiritualist Paul Bavian (Alan Dinehart). It’s seems Ruth is insane but not enough to stop her date with the chair. She writes a letter to Paul to come see her but he has other things to keep him busy. Looks like Ruth is going to laugh her way down the last mile.

Dr.Carl Houston (H.B.Warner) tells the warden he thinks copycat killings following an execution may actually be caused by the possession of the murderers by the electrocuted criminal. He wants Ruth’s body for some experiments. He gets it.

Meanwhile Paul is sneaking into a funeral home to make a mask of dead millionaire John Courtney. His drunken landlady knows what he’s up to and tries a little blackmail. She doesn’t know Paul wears a poison ring and he soon sends her off to the spirit world.

After John’s funeral, his despondent twin sister Roma (Carole Lombard) listens to some goofy home recordings the two made. Downstairs are Dr.Houston, Grant Wilson (Randolph Scott), her fiancee and Nicky Hammond the manager of the estate. John left all the money to Roma.

Roma gets a note from Paul that he’s seen and heard John’s spirit and invites her over for a seance. Nicky calls him and warns him that he knows he’s a phony and he’d better leave her alone. Roma wants to go and Grant goes with her. The seance has all the usual phony trappings but she falls for it anyway.

After that Roma and Grant go to see Dr.Houston. He’s busy working with Ruth’s body and doesn’t want to be disturbed. Too bad. They walk in on him anyway. Roma faints when Ruth’s body falls down. No one notices Ruth’s spirit enter Roma. They do spot thumb marks on Roma’s neck.

Now there’s a seance at the Roma estate. Attending are Roma, Grant, Nicky and Dr.Houston. Paul talks about automatic writing and then pulls a fast one with Nicky’s handkerchief. Nobody notices. Paul goes over to the piano and starts to play. Writing appears on the handkerchief accusing Nicky of murdering John. Paul uses his ring to dispose of Nicky.

Roma takes Paul to Ruth’s apartment. He doesn’t know how she knew about the place and is getting edgy. Max the apartment manager tosses them out but not before Roma gets her hands around his neck for few seconds.  Paul suggests they go to Roma’s yacht.

Grant and Dr.Houston are looking for them. They get to Max’s glass blowing shop by the apartment house. Inside the wind kicks up. John’s spirit is there but no one can see it. He knocks over a glass boat to let Grant know where Roma and Paul got to. On board the boat and in a cabin Paul and Roma are in a lip lock. Paul doesn’t know who she really is.

This is worth seeing, especially for Lombard and Scott early in their careers.


About vintage45

I'm a big fan of vintage books,movies,TV shows and music. I encourage everyone to patronize your local used book/record store and pick up some of the good stuff. My posts are capsule reviews of some favorites that you may want to investigate. The albums posted aren't really reviews but items from my collection that are still available. I try and point out highlights of each one and let the music speak for itself. Thanks to all for checking out the blog.
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