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Whispering Smith Hits London
Whispering Smith Investigates / Whispering Smith vs Scotland Yard

UK 1952
produced by
Anthony Hinds for Hammer/Exclusive
directed by Francis Searle
starring Richard Carlson, Greta Gynt, Herbert Lom, Rona Anderson, Alan Wheatley, Dora Bryan, Reginald Beckwith, Daniel Wherry, Michael Ward, Danny Green, James Raglan, Stuart Nichol, Laurence Naismith, Christine Silver, Vic Wise, Middleton Woods, Ben Williams, Sidney Vivian, Tony Frost, June Bardsley, Michael Hogarth, John Wynn, Anthony Warner, Ian Wilson, Stanley Baker, Lionel Grose, John Singer, John Kyle
screenplay by John Gilling, loosely based on a character created by Frank H. Spearman, music by Frank Spencer

Whispering Smith

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Steve 'Whispering' Smith (Richard Carlson), famed US-detective, would like nothing more than to have a few days off in London, but he's intercepted pretty much at the airport by Anne (Rona Anderson), secretary of an US millionaire whose daughter Sylvia has committed suicide - only Anne doesn't believe this version of the story. At first, Smith isn't at all interested, taking Anne for just another over-ambitious secretary seeing opportunities where there are none to impress her boss - but he feels drawn to her, and after she gets almost run over by a car, he knows there is something going on. So he pays visits to Sylvia's lawyer Reith (Alan Wheatley) - who claims he knows nothing despite it's clear he was in love with her -, her boyfriend Ford (Herbert Lom) - whose lies are just a little too perfect - and her alleged best friend Louise (Greta Gynt) - who's just a bit too eager to put the blame for everything but the Titanic on her. Smith, an incorrigible womanizer, decides to focus on Louise, much to Anne's dismay. That said, Anne doesn't remain idle and with the help of a safecracker (Danny Green) she's met via a newspaper announcement, she has Reith's safe opened ... and finds little black books on all of Reith's clients (all but Sylvia), which shows he has enough knowledge to blackmail them all. Apparently he had a girl acting as bait - Louise, as Smith finds out, but only after he left her alone with Anne.

Smith is taken captive by Reith and Ford, but somehow manages to escape tricking Ford into shooting Reigh. He dashes to Anne's rescue but finds her held at gunpoint by Louise. But he knows one thing that puts him ahead: That Louise is actually Sylvia, and that she's still very much in love with Ford, so he convinces her Ford is dead, and when Ford arrives on the scene, she mistakes him for a policeman and shoots him dead. The confusion is all it takes for Smith to get hold of the situation. And in the end, he gets the girl (Anne, in case you're wondering), too.

 

Only extremely loosely based on the actual Whispering Smith-character (a detective in the Wild West), Whispering Smith Hits London is a pretty lively murder mystery though, carried by a fine cast and equipped with plenty of action as well as plottwists (even if not all make sense) to keep the audience interested. Furthermore, the thing is dynamically directed and well-paced. On the other hand, the movie does contain a few too many clichées to qualify as a masterpiece, and some story elements come across as downright silly, but it's pretty good genre entertainment nevertheless.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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In times of uncertainty of a possible zombie outbreak, a woman has to decide between two men - only one of them's one of the undead.

 

There's No Such Thing as Zombies
starring
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special appearances by
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directed by
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written by
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produced by
Michael Haberfelner, Luana Ribeira and Eddie Bammeke

 

now streaming at

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Robots and rats,
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Tales to Chill
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Tales to Chill
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a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
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the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
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the new anthology by
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Out now from
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