The Gracie Allen Murder Case (1939)

the gracie allen murder case 1939

Warren William is Philo Vance in this wacky adaption of the S.S.Van Dine novel. This is a chance to see one of our greatest comedic talents at the top of her form.

The Vogue Perfume Company is having their annual picnic. Perfume mixer Bill Brown (Kent Taylor) is having a little problem with his girlfriend Ann (Ellen Drew). The company owner Ambrose (Jed Prouty) shows up with his niece just back from Europe. It’s Gracie. He asks Bill to show her around town. Thinking it’ll make Ann jealous he readily agrees.

At the Diamond Slipper Club Daniel Mirche (Jerome Cowan) gets a call from escaped prisoner Benny “The Buzzard” to come and get him. He was taking the rap for Daniel. Dancer Dixie Del Marr isn’t sure he should go.

Back at the picnic someone in a passing car throws a cigarette and a pack of matches out and they land on Gracie’s dress. Bill says the cigarette smells likes the company’s perfume and bitter almonds. Bill puts it in his cigarette case.

That night Bill takes Gracie to the Diamond Slipper. Their waiter is Gus (Horace McMahon). Bill goes into the office to see Dan. Dan’s lawyer Richard Lawrence (H.B.Warner) is sitting at a table when he sees Gracie signal him. He thinks she’s flirting and goes over. All she wanted was for him to get Gus.

Gracie goes to the office to find Bill and instead finds the dead body of The Buzzard. She also finds Bill’s cigarette case on the floor and keeps it. After some wackiness Police Sgt.Ernest Heath (William Demarest) shows up with his men. The body’s gone. Thanks to Gracie confusing everyone she and Bill are arrested. The Buzzard’s body was pulled out of the river.

D.A. F.X.Markham (Donald MacBride) now gets some help from his old friend Philo Vance (Warren William). Gracie gets into the act and keeps calling Philo Fido. The more involved she gets the more confused everyone becomes. When there’s another murder Gracie’s mouth gets Philo temporarily arrested.

The rest of the movie is some slapstick and a lot of Gracie. The Philo Vance character is just there as Gracie’s foil and it’s fun.



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.
This entry was posted in Comedy, Crime-Mystery-Spy, vintage movies and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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