The Law of Contact

The Sphinx (June 1, 1933)

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The Sphinx
 

Released on June 1, 1933: (running time 62 minutes) A serial killer is loose in the city, and the only suspect is a deaf mute with a perfect alibi.

Produced by Albert S. Rogell

Directed by Phil Rosen

The Actors: Lionel Atwill (Jerome Breen), Sheila Terry (Jerry Crane, newspaper society page editor), Theodore Newton (Jack Burton, newspaper reporter), Paul Hurst (Police Detective Terrence Aloysius Hogan), Luis Alberni (Luigi Baccigalupi), Robert Ellis (Police Inspector James Riley), Lucien Prival (Jenks, butler), Lillian Leighton (Mother Werner), Paul Fix (Dave Werner, stockbroker's clerk), Ernie Adams (Tony), Hooper Atchley (Defense Attorney Oliver P. Curran), Jack Cheatham (homicide squad member), George 'Gabby' Hayes (Police Detective Casey), Theodore Lorch (Doctor Augustus Kelton), Wilfred Lucas (prosecuting attorney), Sam Lufkin (medical examiner)

 

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The Piano Man

In 1890 Henrietta Louise Cromwell Brooks was born into a very wealthy family. The wealthy young socialite was often thought of as the most beautiful woman in Washington D.C. She married General Douglas MacArthur in 1922, and claimed that General John J. Pershing also loved her and threatened to send Douglas MacArthur to the ends of the earth if he married Louise. In 1929, she divorced General MacArthur and soon married actor Lionel Atwill.

Lionel Atwill was born in a wealthy British family, but instead of becoming an architect like the family wanted, he was fascinated by acting, and was soon in Hollywood, the center of motion pictures. He was typecast as the villain in many of his appearances, often a deranged, maniac villain. He was in five Frankenstein movies, and many more horror thrillers.

Supposedly he once said, “One side of my face is gentle and kind, incapable of anything but love of my fellow man. The other side, the other profile, is cruel and predatory and evil, incapable of anything but the lusts and dark passions. It all depends on which side of my face is turned toward you--or the camera. It all depends on which side faces the moon at the ebb of the tide.”

In this murder thriller, he is a wealthy British man in America who mixes with the upper crust, often giving generously at charity events. As our adventure opens, an immigrant janitor in an office building encounters the well-dressed man leaving the office of a stock broker. The janitor stops the man and asks what he is doing in the building at this late hour, and the man merely smiles and asks for a match to light his cigar. The janitor again tells the stranger that he is not allowed in the building after closing, but the man only smiles cryptically and asks for the correct time.

The well-dressed stranger then leaves without another word, and the janitor discovers the body of a dead man in the office that the well-dressed stranger just left. The well-dressed stranger is quickly arrested and sent to trial, but is not convicted. The murders continue, and the well-dressed stranger can always prove that he is not at the scene of the crime. Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter drizzled over it and enjoy the show.

Lionel Atwill
Lionel Atwill
George 'Gabby' Hayes
George 'Gabby' Hayes
Gabby Hayes
Gabby Hayes
Gabby Hayes and Theodore Newton
Gabby Hayes and Theodore Newton
Lillian Leighton
Lillian Leighton
Lionel Atwill
Lionel Atwill
Lionel Atwill and Lillian Leighton
Lionel Atwill and Lillian Leighton
Lionel Atwill and Lucien Prival
Lionel Atwill and Lucien Prival
Lionel Atwill
Lionel Atwill
Lucien Prival
Lucien Prival
Lucien Prival and Lionel Atwill
Lucien Prival and Lionel Atwill
Lucien Prival
Lucien Prival
Luis Alberni
Luis Alberni
Luis Alberni and Hooper Atchley
Luis Alberni and Hooper Atchley
Luis Alberni and Wilfred Lucas
Luis Alberni and Wilfred Lucas
Luis Alberni
Luis Alberni
Wilfred Lucas
Wilfred Lucas
Luis Alberni listens for a heart beat
Luis Alberni listens for a heart beat
Luis Alberni
Luis Alberni
Paul Fix
Paul Fix
Paul Hurst
Paul Hurst
Paul Hurst and Gabby Hayes
Paul Hurst and Gabby Hayes
Paul Hurst and Robert Ellis
Paul Hurst and Robert Ellis
Paul Hurst and Theodore Newton
Paul Hurst and Theodore Newton
Paul Hurst
Paul Hurst
Paul Hurst and Theodore Newton
Paul Hurst and Theodore Newton
Paul Hurst
Paul Hurst
Robert Ellis
Robert Ellis
Robert Ellis
Robert Ellis
Sheila Terry
Sheila Terry
Sheila Terry and Lionel Atwill
Sheila Terry and Lionel Atwill
Sheila Terry
Sheila Terry
Theodore Lorch
Theodore Lorch
Theodore Lorch and Hooper Atchley
Theodore Lorch and Hooper Atchley
Theodore Newton
Theodore Newton
Theodore Newton and Robert Ellis
Theodore Newton and Robert Ellis
Theodore Newton and Sheila Terry
Theodore Newton and Sheila Terry
Theodore Newton and Sheila Terry
Theodore Newton and Sheila Terry
Theodore Newton
Theodore Newton