Sunday, October 26, 2014

So I have seen the movie before

Every now and then I sit down to watch a movie, only to realize five minutes in that it's something I've already seen before. Earlier this week, I had that misfortune with After Office Hours, a zippy little comic mystery with editor Clark Gable solving a murder while falling in love with society reporter Constance Bennett. It was when Gable showed up talking to Bennett's mother (Billie Burke) that I had the distinct feeling I'd seen the movie before. It was when the action hit the Other Man's (Harvey Stephens) crew house that it was blatantly obvious I'd seen the film. It's OK, but overpriced from the Warner Archive collection. It's the sort of movie that needs to be in one of those four-film box sets.

Anyhow, I was only mentioning After Office Hours because the feeling I had on watching it for the second time is the same feeling I had on watching tonight's Silent Sunday Nights feature for the second time some years back. That movie is The Monster, airing overnight at 12:45 AM. The plot of this engaging movie has comic actor Johnny Arthur playing a shop assistant in love with the girl (Gertrude Olmstead) but having to compete with another man, until accidents start happening and people start disappearing. This leads the main characters to the sanitarium next door, where the doctor running the place, Dr. Ziska (Lon Chaney) winds up being more than they bargained for. This is part horror, part comedy, although the emphasis is more on the comedy.

At least this week's TCM Import is one I know I've seen multiple times in the past Les Diaboliques, at 2:15 AM.

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