Seven Doors to Death (July 27, 1944)
Released on July 27, 1944: Dead bodies are appearing everywhere. There are seven shops in an alley, and one of the shopkeepers is a killer.
Directed by Elmer Clifton
Written by Helen Kiely and Elmer Clifton.
The Actors: Chick Chandler (Jimmy McMillan), June Clyde (Mary Rawling), George Meeker (Charles Eaton), Michael Raffetto (Captain William Jaffe), Gregory Gaye (Henry Butler, aka Gregor), Edgar Dearing (Claude Burns), Rebel Randall (Mable De Rose), Milton Wallace (Donald Adams), Casey MacGregor (Timothy Green), Gene Roth (Detective Morgan).
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When I was a very young fellow working in the steel mill at McDonald, Ohio, the price of gasoline rose to more than one dollar a gallon for the first time. My car had a 24 gallon tank, and it took all of a twenty dollar bill to fill it. If I was driving on fumes, a twenty dollar bill wouldn't even fill that monster gas tank that powered my monster of a car that got about 12 miles to a gallon if I was lucky. Oh, for the good old days when I could fill that gas tank for less than $5, and they might give me a new water glass or setting of flatware as a reward. But that isn't what brought me to these thoughts. I first thought about the gas cap lock and key that I purchased when the price of gasoline went through the roof for the first time. It was not uncommon for people to siphon gas from cars as they sat in parking lots, and locking gas caps were the answer. But in those days it still wasn't common to lock your car doors - especially when you were in the car and driving. In 1991 Detroit had over 200 carjackings in 21 days, and we were all afraid that while stopped in traffic someone would rush up with a gun and take over our car. And I can remember stories of cars stolen from women sitting at a stop light, with the carjacker pulling the lady out of her car and getting in and racing away . . . with the gal's baby in the back seat! What horror! But carjackings did not begin in the 1990's.
I cannot tell you when the first carjacking took place, but this movie begins with a carjacking - our leading lady screams, rushes out of a dark home, and in the street sticks a gun in the face of a fellow driving by, and forces him to drive her away from the crime scene. This could be the world's first carjacking on film. Our gal is the suspect of a murder, but as our story moves along, she screams many more times as more bodies clutter the screen. Grab your bowl of hot, buttered white kernel popcorn and get ready for a whodunit that has more creepy suspects than a bottle of Carter's Little Liver pills.
|Casey MacGregor||Chick Chandler and George Meeker|
|Chick Chandler and June Clyde||Chick Chandler and Michael Raffetto|
|Chick Chandler and Milton Wallace||Chick Chandler|
|Edgar Dearing||George Meeker and June Clyde|
|Gregory Gaye, 1944||Gregory Gaye|
|June Clyde, 1944||June Clyde and Michael Raffetto|
|June Clyde||Michael Raffetto|
|Milton Wallace||Rebel Randall|