Tuesday, April 10, 2018

The Devil Plays (1931)

This film (also known as The Murdock Affair) is a pretty decent murder mystery. It has a very Golden Age type story with the initial crime taking place in a big house packed full of beautiful and wealthy people in posh frocks and dinner jackets, and an amateur detective (a crime writer to boot) helps out the police.

Jameson Forrest is that amateur and very suave he is too. The victim (Richard Tucker) though is a bit of a cad and various people have motive to kill him including Forrest's lover played by Florence Britton. It can't be the Quincys in the next room though as they were drugged. Or were they?

The film is well plotted and keeps you guessing though isn't without it's flaws. Some of the acting is strangely stilted and a couple of the characters (such as the police sergeant played by Lew Kelly) are a bit annoying. Well never mind that, as a 1930s whodunnit it is very well done indeed.