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The Shadow - The Case of the Cotton Kimono

USA 1954
produced by
Nathan Kroll, Willson Tuttle for Meridian Pictures
directed by Charles F.Haas
starring Tom Helmore, Paula Raymond, Frank M.Thomas, Alexander Scourby, Norman Shelly, William Smithers, Leona Powers, Peggy Lobbin
written by Peter Barry

The Shadow

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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When a woman (Peggy Lobbin) is murdered in her cotton kimono, smalltown cop Harris (Norman Shelly) calls in police psychologist Lamont Cranston (Tom Helmore) and his assistant Margot Lane (Paula Raymond) for assistance after he has hit a wall in his investigations. At first, suspicion falls upon the victim's boyfriend Alex (William Smithers), whom Harris has been grilling for days now, but after questioning him, Cranston comes up with another suspect, Grimmbauer (Alexander Scourby), the victim's singing teacher who was madly but unsuccessfully in love with her. When an initial interrogation leads to nowhere, Lamont revisits Grimmbauer in his secret persona, the Shadow, an invisible being that can climb into the mind of criminals. But just when Grimmbauer, who wasn't the killer after all, confesses who has shot the woman - he himself is shot. Harris is now quick to arrest Alex and trick him into a confession, but in the meantime, Cranston finds out that Harris was actually in love with the victim as well, and suddenly everything points to Harris as being the killer ... but by then, Margot is alone with him, and foolishly enough, she tells Harris about her suspicion's concerning him - and suddenly is at his mercy. Thank God though the Shadow interferes just in time.


An ok TV-pilot for a proposed series based on radio's The Shadow that never got made - and it's pretty apparent why The Shadow did not become a TV-series: While Tom Helmore and Paula Raymond make a pretty appealing lead couple, the whole concept of The Shadow - a supernatual being able to telepathically enter the minds of criminals - does not translate woo well to the screen. It might work on radio show, but once translated into images, the whole concept seems to be a bit of a cheat, storywise. Now that's not too bothering in this pilot, but solving a crime using the same plot device week after week seems to be dead boring. That all said, The Case of the Cotton Kimono is still worth watching as an interesting one-off.


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




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


A Killer Conversation

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

out now on DVD