The Missing Guest (1938)

Approved   |    |  Action, Comedy, Crime


The Missing Guest (1938) Poster

A newspaper reporter, "Scoop" Hanlon "Paul Kelly", is required to spend time in a haunted house in which two murders are committed, several people faint and most of them drink a lot.


6/10
70

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19 March 2019 | csteidler
6
| More laughs than thrills in lightweight murder mystery
Newspaper writer Paul Kelly gets a tough assignment from his editor: Crash a party at a famous mansion and spend the night in the "blue room"--the site of a notorious murder 20 years ago.

Kelly's breezy manner sets the tone for this fast paced mystery that contains plentiful comic relief and just a bit of suspense. The old dark mansion is re-opening after all these years. Owner Selmer Jackson and his daughter Constance Moore are hoping to put aside the rumors that the place is haunted. Among the guests at their bash is William Lundigan, a handsome young family friend who is in love with Moore, and Edwin Stanley as the family doctor who seems to know a lot of the family history, including the story of the death in the blue room.

Having sneaked into the party, Kelly is discovered and thrown out, but appears again in the morning, having bribed a servant--anything to avoid facing his editor and being put back on the women's advice column. And the plot quickly thickens: Lundigan, having volunteered to debunk the ghost stories by spending the night in the blue room himself, has disappeared.

Paul Kelly is convincing enough as the irreverent hero. Constance Moore is earnest and smart as the beautiful damsel; not at all surprisingly, she and Kelly team up as soon as he convinces her that he's on the level: "At first I did think this ghost stuff was a gag. Now I'm beginning to wonder. You know, we could break this case in a minute if you'd help me."

Enjoyable if not exactly a classic.

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Genres

Action | Comedy | Crime | Mystery

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