27 August 2019 | boblipton
Murder On Delivery
It's the graveyard shift, with night commander William Gargan holding down the fort. A car rolls up right in front of the station. Someone opens the car and a corpse falls out. It's Bernard Nedell with a bullet hole in him. He was a P.I. and blackmailer by trade, and one of the suspects is Carole Landis, whose father is up for election, so there's pressure to put her behind bars. Soon the case becomes ever more tangled....
It's an okay little flick, directed for speed by Otto Brower. Brower bounced between directing B pictures -- his westerns are lively affairs -- and being an assistant director on some pretty classy As, one of the highly competent craftsmen who never got the breaks, but was obviously known in the industry for his good work. Writer Scott Darling ekes out the short running time with eccentric characters: the guy who breaks out of jail so he can wrestle at an Elks smoker, the reporter who wears his grandfather's buffalo-skin coat, a kid whose head is trapped in a goldfish bowl (his mother wants it removed without breaking it), Mabel Paige as the flower seller who wants her $1.75 from the corpse, and iold-timer Tom Moore and J. Farrell MacDonald.
It's more a procedural that film noir, barring some eccentrically lit shots on an apartment stairs, and there are no early clues; everything breaks at once, with the motive revealed after the audience can figure out whodunnit. However, it's an example of the lively B movie that Fox could still turn out on a short budget, given the superfluity of talent available.