Friday, September 7, 2018

Midnight Phantom (1935)

Midnight Phantom is a curiously disjointed film, at times it seems more like a string of random film snippets thrown together by someone drunk.

At it's core the film is about new police chief Sullivan (Jim Farley) who is very good at making enemies especially amongst his senior officers. Lieutenant Burke (Lloyd Hughes) is also sore at Sullivan as he opposes the marriage to his daughter Diana (Claudia Bell). It is also gossiped that Sullivan is knocking off his secretary (Barbara Bedford) much to the fury of the mother (Mary Foy). Eventually the chief is killed... right in the middle of a police conference being held by the rather smug criminologist Professor Graham (Reginald Denny).

The film is pretty shoddy in execution, obviously filmed in a rush on a very low budget. Many times in the film there are awkward pauses where the actors desperately try and remember their barely rehearsed lines. The pacing is also off with a number of strange tangents. However awful as much of it it all oddly seems to add to the enjoyment. The film takes a while to get going but the final act is good.