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The Dark Eyes of London
The Human Monster / Dead Eyes of London

UK 1940
produced by
John Argyle
directed by Walter Summers
starring Bela Lugosi, Hugh Williams, Greta Gynt, Edmon Ryan, Wilfred Walter, Alexander Field, O.B. Clarence, May Hallatt, Bryan Herbert, Arthur E. Owen, Charles Penrose, Gerald Pring, Julie Suedo
screenplay by John Argyle, Patrick Kirwan, Walter Summers, based on the novel by Edgar Wallace, music by Guy Jones

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Scotland Yard inspector Holt (Hugh Williams) is investigating the deaths of several people found in the mudflats of River Thames, and his clues all lead to insurance agent Orloff (Bela Lugosi), a benign and benevolent man who makes many a donation to Professor Dearborn’s home of the blind. And he takes care of Diana Stuart (Greta Gynt), the sister of one of the deceased who is trying to find her brother’s murderer, getting her a job at above-mentioned home of the blind.

Thing is, with several of the victims, notes in braille are found, and they all were insured at Orloff’s company – and of course, Orloff really is the killer, preferably throwing his victims right out of a window into the mudflats himself … but when the police get a conclusive lead on him, he simply disappears. Diana meanwhile finds evidence that the home of the blind is somehow connected to the murders – when she has to find out that benign Dearborn is not only not blind but also Orloff himself in disguise, and he plans for her to be his next victim … enter Jake (Wilfred Walter), Orloff’s hunchbacked and malformed assistant, who finally starts to rebel against his master after realizing that Orloff has killed many a friend of his, and in the finale he throws the villain out of a window into the Thames’ mudflats, just like Orloff liked to dispose of his victims. When the police arrives, they are already too late to interfere, but still, Holt gets Diana in the end.

Edmon Ryan provides some comic relief as Holt’s American sidekick.

 

Mediocre British Edgar Wallace adaptation that suffers from the weaknesses of its source material (like why would Orloff try to attract the attention of Diana knowing that she’s out to find the killer of her brother) and from a cast of very flat characters, but at least Lugosi in one of his better villain roles is rather amusing, even if too much emphasis is put on him being a mad scientist, which doesn’t make much sense concerning the movie’s plot.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD