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Terror by Night (1946)

Country of Origin: USA
Year of Production: 1946
Running Times: 59 mins 46 sec (UK - theatrical)      60 mins     60 mins 11 sec (UK - video)
Format: black and white     35mm
Ratio: 1.37:1
Sound: mono

CREDITS

PRODUCTION
Production Company: Universal Pictures
Executive Producer: Howard Benedict
Producer: Roy William Neill

SCRIPT
Script: Frank Gruber
Story: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

DIRECTION
Director: Roy William Neill
Assistant Director: Melville Shyer

PHOTOGRAPHY
Director of Photography: Maury Gertsman

EDITING AND POST PRODUCTION
Editor: Saul A. Goodkind

MUSIC
Musical Director: Milton Rosen
Music: Ralph Freed, Richard Hageman, Leigh Harline, William Lava, Charles Previn, Hans J. Salter, Paul Sawtell, Frank Skinner (all uncredited)

SOUND
Sound Director: Bernard B. Brown
Sound Technician: Jack A. Bolger Jr
Sound Mix: Western Electric Sound System

MAKE UP AND COSTUMES
Director of Make Up: Jack P. Pierce
Hair: Carmen Dirigo
Gowns: Vera West

DESIGN AND SET CONSTRUCTION
Art Directors: John B. Goodman, Abraham Grossman
Set Decorators: Russell A. Gausman, Carl Lawrence

MISCELLANEOUS
Dialogue Director: Raymond Kessler

CAST
Basil Rathbone (Sherlock Holmes)
Nigel Bruce (Dr John H. Watson)
Alan Mowbray (Colonel Sebastian Moran / Major Duncan-Bleek)
Dennis Hoey (Inspector Lestrade)
Mary Forbes (Lady Margaret Carstairs)
Renee Godfrey (Vivian Vedder)
Frederick Worlock (Professor William Kilbane)
Gerald Hamer (Alf Shallcross)
Janet Murdoch (Mrs Shallcross)
Leyland Hodgson (train conductor)
Billy Bevan (passenger car attendant)
Geoffrey Steele (Ronald Carstairs)
Skelton Knaggs (Sands)
Boyd Davis (phoney Inspector MacDonald)
Gilbert Allen (dining car steward - uncredited)
Harry Cording (Mock - uncredited)
Colin Kenny (phoney constable - uncredited)
Charles Knight (baggage car guard - uncredited)
Tom Pilkington (attendant - uncredited)
C. Aubrey Smith (man on train platform - uncredited)
Bobby Wissler (Mock Jr - uncredited)

SUMMARY

Holmes is hired to protect the fabulous Star of Rhodesia, a huge diamond, from potential theft as it is being transported by train from London to Edinburgh. Holmes substitutes the Star for a fake which is subsequently stolen. As theft is followed by murder, Holmes finds himself on the trail of Colonel Sebastian Moran, a former associate of the evil Professor Moriarty.

CAPSULE REVIEW

A huge improvement over the lacklustre Pursuit to Algiers, Neill makes excellent use of the claustrophobic confines of the train. It also has a property mystery for Holmes to pursue and, in Moran, a worthy adversary. It's still below the standard set by The Scarlet Claw (1944) and The Spider Woman (1944) but for a latter day entry to the Universal series of Holmes' thrillers, it's enjoyable enough.

AVAILABILITY

UK
Theatrical Distributor: General Film Distributors
Video Distributor: Orbit Media / Screen Classics (SVC0004)
DVD Distributor: Orbit Media (HSC0049)

USA
Theatrical Distributor: Universal Pictures Company Inc
Television Distributor: Motion Pictures for Television Inc
Video Distributor: Madacy Entertainment; VCI Home Entertainment; Timeless Video Inc; Fox Home Entertainment; Republic Studios; Celebrity Duplicating; United American Video; Front Row Video; Anchor Bay Entertainment
DVD Distributor: BFS Entertainment and Multimedia; Platinum Disc Corporation

CENSORSHIP HISTORY

Finland
Rating: S

UK
Rating: U (1992)

USA
Rating: G

TIMELINE

1946
February

1: USA - theatrical release

March
1: UK - rated A by the BBFC (for theatrical release)

1947
November

28: Finland - theatrical release

1954
December

1: USA - television broadcast (on CBS)

1960
April

21: UK - television broadcast (on Rediffusion)

1985
January

17: USA - video release (Celebrity Duplicating)

1990
September

5: USA - video release (Anchor Bay Entertainment)

1992
July

30: UK - rated U by the BBFC (for video release)

1993
March

10: USA - video release (Fox Home Entertainment)

May
Day Unknown: UK - television broadcast (on SuperChannel)

1994
September

14: USA - video release (Anchor Bay Entertainment)

1995
January

15: USA - video release (Madacy Entertainment)

1997
June

11: USA - video release (Republic Studios)

1998
October

12: USA - video release (United American Video)

2000
March

2: USA - video release (Timeless Video Inc)

October
9: UK - DVD release (Orbit Media HSC0049)

November
28: USA - video release (VCI Home Entertainment)

2001
March

5: UK - video release (Orbit Media (SVC0004))

May
22: USA - video release (Front Row Video)

June
5: USA - video release (Front Row Video)

September
19: USA - DVD release (Platinum Disc Corporation)

October
9: USA - DVD release (BFS Entertainment and Multimedia)

POSTER TAGS

One Way Ticket to DEATH..!

MURDER... at 90 Miles an Hour!

ALTERNATIVE TITLES

Juwelenraub - German title
Terrore nella notte - Italian title

LINKS

SEQUEL TO
The Hound of the Baskervilles (1939)
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (1939)
Sherlock Holmes and the Voice of Terror (1942)
Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon (1942)
Sherlock Holmes in Washington (1943)
Sherlock Holmes Faces Death (1943)
Spider Woman (1944)
The Scarlet Claw (1944)
The Pearl of Death (1944)
The House of Fear (1945)
The Woman in Green (1945)
Pursuit to Algiers (1945)

SEQUEL
Dressed to Kill (1946)

FOOTAGE INCLUDED IN
A Personal History of British Cinema by Stephen Frears (1994)

REFERENCES

MAGAZINES

Kinematograph Weekly no.2036 (25 April 1946) (UK)
review

Monthly Film Bulletin vol.13 no.146 (February 1946) p.67 (UK)
credits, review

Motion Picture Herald vol.162 no.5 (2 February 1946) (USA)
review

Radio Times vol.247 no.3237 (30 November 1985) p.26 (UK)
review

Sight and Sound vol.2 no.6 (October 1992) p.69 (UK)
note

Today's Cinema vol.66 no.5333 (23 April 1946) (UK)
review

BOOKS

Universal Horrors by Michael Brunas, John Brunas and Tom Weaver (Jefferson, NC: McFarland and Co (1990))
credits, review

KEYWORDS

Sherlock Holmes; detectives; sequels; diamonds; trains

 


Last Updated: 10 August, 2009

 


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