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The Murder Man (1935)

Passed | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 12 July 1935 (USA)
When a crooked businessman is fatally shot, a hotshot New York newspaper reporter specializing in murder stories narrows in on the dead man's associate.

Director:

Tim Whelan

Writers:

Tim Whelan (screen play), John C. Higgins (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Spencer Tracy ... Steve Grey
Virginia Bruce ... Mary Shannon
Lionel Atwill ... Captain Cole
Harvey Stephens ... Henry Mander
Robert Barrat ... Hal Robins - Newspaper Editor
James Stewart ... 'Shorty'
William Collier Sr. ... 'Pop' Grey
Bobby Watson ... Carey Booth
William Demarest ... 'Red' Maguire
John Sheehan ... Sweeney
Lucien Littlefield ... Peter J. Rafferty
George Chandler ... Sol Hertzberger
Fuzzy Knight ... 'Buck' Hawkins
Louise Henry ... Lillian Hopper
Robert Warwick ... Colville
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Storyline

Steve Grey, reporter for the Daily Star, has a habit of scooping all the other papers in town. When Henry Mander is investigated for the murder of his shady business partner, Grey is one step ahead of the police to the extent that he often dictates his story in advance of its actual occurrence. He leads the police through an 'open and shut' case resulting in Mander being tried, convicted and sentenced to death. Columnist Mary Shannon is in love with Steve but she sees him struggle greatly with his last story before Mander's execution. When she starts typing out the story from his recorded dictation, she realizes why. Written by Gary Jackson <garyjack5@cogeco.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 July 1935 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Crooked Alibi See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$167,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film marks the first for Spencer Tracy under MGM contract. He would remain at MGM for the next 20 years. See more »

Quotes

Henry Mander: Get out!
Steve Grey: Ok, high finance, I'll see you at the bar.
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Connections

Referenced in Stars of the Silver Screen: James Stewart (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Dawn of Love
(uncredited)
Music by William Axt
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User Reviews

 
Surprise Twist
11 May 2004 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

This was one of the first features that Spencer Tracy did for his new studio MGM when they signed him in 1935. At his first studio, 20th Century Fox he was cast in a whole lot of routine action pictures as a two-fisted rugged type in whatever role he played. It's no different here, in fact until he played Father Mullin in San Francisco, Tracy's MGM career promised more roles of the same type.

Here he's a newspaper reporter in the best tradition of The Front Page which this film borrows a lot from. He's called The Murder Man because he's the one the editor, Robert Barrat, call for when he wants coverage on any homicide. He's covering one in this film concerning an investment broker (con artist) who's accused of killing his partner. In fact Tracy provides key evidence for a conviction.

The movie does have a surprise ending which I won't reveal, unusual for a film in the 1930s. That and the presence of Spencer Tracy and James Stewart make it worth viewing.

This was the film debut of James Stewart. He has a role of another reporter on the same paper as Tracy. He was signed by MGM after appearing on Broadway in the play Yellow Jacket and garnering rave reviews. He's the same Jimmy Stewart that soon became an icon, but he didn't get much attention for the few lines he had here. He would have to wait for his next film appearance in Rose Marie to get moviegoers attention.


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