21 April 2019 | dougdoepke
Only The Stars and Lola Lane Shine
Routine whodunit distinguished by unusual setting-- an observatory with a big window on the stars. So who shot Dr.Stone while a gallery of spectators sat entranced by a ceiling of stellar lights. Detective Mallory is doing his best to find out, but it's all rather puzzling with no apparent motive. Then too, comedy relief from Det. Regan's no help, while feisty girl journalist Palmer wants a scoop no matter what. So how will it all turn out, which amounts to the "why" as much as the "who".
Too bad actress Lane doesn't get more screentime. She's a lively presence that picks up the often bland proceedings. In fact, her snappy lines aimed at Mallory remain a highlight. Then too, Prof. Einfeld and fumbling flunkie Jim lend some color to an otherwise rather bland male cast. Unfortunately, director Strayer adds nothing in the way of atmosphere, usually an important element in a whodunit. Here it would have been easy given the exotic setting. At the same time, few scenes take place outside the observatory. I wish that crucial setting were credited by IMDB. Looks to me like the giant telescope had to be real, and my guess would be Mt. Palomar Observatory also located in southern California.
Anyway, the novel touches remain about the only reason to catch up with this uneven indie production.