Excentric detective Jim HAnvey (Guy Kibbee) is asked by Davis (Wade Boteler) of
Intercontinental Insurance) to help find the emeralds of the Frost s(Catherine
Doucet, Howard C.Hickman) that were stolen last night - & Hanvey refuses
Later he is asked by Joan Frost (Lucie Kaye), daughter of the Frosts, &
her fiancé Don Terry (Tom Brown) to do the same ... only with the slight
difference that Don has really stolen the emeralds to win a bet he has made in
a state of drunkenness, but has lost them when he passed out drunkenly.
Hanvey is in a good mood to throw the youngsters out right away for their
pure stupidity, only when he sees them thereatened by gunmen Romo (Edward
Brophy) & Smith (Edward Gargan) he decides to help the couple ... but
before Hanvey can even do much investigating, a taxidriver shows up with the
emeralds, which Don has obviously forgotten in the cab in his drunken state ...
All's well that ends well ?
Of course not. When Don wants to secretly put the emeralds back into the
Frosts' safe, not only are the emeralds stolen from him, but also a corpse is
placed right at his feet, making him the prime (& only) suspect. Only
thanks to Hanvey can he escape ... but Hanvey has quite some troubles keeping
the police from his trail when everywhere he tries to hide Don, his fiancée
Joan shows up after a while - & she's of course always followed by the
police. It is quite some time before Hanvey figures the only place tohide the
couple is in the home of the deceased's wife (Helen Jerome Eddy), who agrees to
give them shelter since she's convinced of Don's innocence.
Hanvey now goes after Romo & Smith & soon finds out they were hired
by Dunn (Theodore von Eltz), the man Don has made the bet with that he could
steal the emeralds & who now desperately wants to get his hands on them.
However, when Hanvey thinks he has set a perfect trap to unmask Dunn as the
killer, he finds out Dunn has an alibi, /& while Romo & Smith do not
have an alibi, they have no intentions for being hanged for a murder they
didn't commit & thus force Hanvey to keep on investigating to clear them.
In the end, Hanvey is forced to make a gamble: he persuades Don to give
himself up to the police in front of all the suspects, & this way forces
the real killer to show his identity ... & the killer is ... Davis, head
of Intercontinental Insurances, who just got a tad too greedy.
Lighthearted & goodnatured b-murder mystery, with Guy Kibbee playing an
especially cranky investigator, which makes the film somehow charming. However,
at the same time the story also seems awfully constructed with some twists
& turns just leading nowhere or being totally unconvincing .... including
the mystery's solution.