Saturday, July 2, 2011

The Case of the Curious Bride(1935).

The Case of the Curious Bride(1935). Mystery film, the second in a series starring Warren William as Perry Mason.

The story begins when Rhoda Montaine, an old friend of lawyer Perry Mason, who is asked to help a friend of hers who husband, was thought to be dead, is still alive. Rhoda, maybe the one in trouble, Perry has the coroner, exhume her first husband, Gregory Moxley. Instead of a corpse, they find the statue of a wooden Indian. Perry decides to confront him in his home, but when he arrives, he finds Moxley dead. Perry then visits Rhoda, where her current husband, Carl Montaine, reveals that Rhoda has left him to protect him from a scandal. Perry follows her to the airport and has her surrender to the press. C. Phillip Montaine, Carl's father, insists that Rhoda's marriage to his son is illegitimate, which would allow Carl to testify against her. To prevent that, Perry hires another woman to pretend to have married Moxley before Rhoda. Perry's detective, Spudsy Drake, discovers that Moxley is married to showgirl Doris Pender, even though her brother Oscar admits he was at Moxley's apartment on the night of the murder, he denies having committed the crime. Perry throws a party, inviting all the suspects. Will Perry find the real murder?

If you are a fan of the 30's detective films, you may enjoy this film too. Of course... it is always fun to see a yearly Errol Flynn performance.

Fun Facts:

One of Errol Flynn's earliest films, his role consisted of lying on a marble slab as a corpse. There was also a flashback sequence towards the end of the film showing how Flynn was killed. The film in question has appeared at least twice on Turner Classic Movies during Errol Flynn festivals despite his very limited ( less than two minutes) screen time.

Unlike the novels and the Raymond Burr TV series, which used Los Angeles as a location and/or base, here Perry Mason's offices are in San Francisco.

Margaret Lindsay (September 19, 1910 - May 9, 1981). After some minor roles in Pre-Code films such as Christopher Strong and Baby Face, Lindsay was cast in the film, Cavalcade. Lindsay was selected for a small role as Edith Harris, a doomed English bride whose honeymoon voyage takes place on the Titanic.

Her performance in, Cavalcade earned her a contract at Warner Bros. where she became a  supporting player, working with Paul Muni, Errol Flynn, Henry Fonda, Warren William, Leslie Howard, George Arliss, Humphrey Bogart, Boris Karloff and Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. Lindsay was cast four times as the love interest of James Cagney in Warner films from 1933-1935. She performed with Cagney in four films: Frisco Kid, Devil Dogs of the Air, G-Men and Lady Killer.

Lindsay co-starred with Bette Davis in four films:  1934's Fog Over Frisco; in 1935's Dangerous, Bordertown, Jezebel(1938), The Law in Her Hands (1936), in which she played a mob lawyer. Author Roger Dooley identified the film as "being the only film of the 1930s to have a pair of female legal partners". Made after the Motion Picture Production Code came into effect.

Lindsay's favorite film role may have been, The House of the Seven Gables in 1940, with George Sanders and Vincent Price. Directed by Joe May from a screenplay by Lester Cole, the film's musical score by Frank Skinner was nominated for an Academy Award.

Her 1940s film series included Columbia's first entry in its Crime Doctor series, as well as her continuing role as Nikki Porter in, Columbia's Ellery Queen series from 1940-1942.

Lindsay performed in a supporting role in the 1942 film, The Spoilers, starring John Wayne, and in Fritz Lang's Scarlet Street in 1945. While her work in the late 1940s would occasionally involve a supporting role in MGM films, Cass Timberlane with Spencer Tracy, after which her film career began to fade. Her last film was, Tammy and the Doctor (1963).

Early in her career, Lindsay lived with her sister Helen in Hollywood. Later in life, she lived with her youngest sister Mickie.

Margaret Lindsay's sister, Jane Kies (1909–1985), was also an actress named, Jane Gilbert. In 1940, Jane married the son of Hedda Hopper, actor William Hopper, best known for his role as Paul Drake in the Perry Mason television series.  Lindsay's niece Peggy Kenline and great-nephew Brad Yates were also actors.

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