Midnight Limited (1940)

June 9, 2011

On the midnight limited train from New York to Montreal $75,000 in diamonds are stolen which is the basic plot in this mystery/thriller starring Marjorie Reynolds, John King, George Cleveland, and a favorite character actor of mine Stanford Jolley. When a second robbery of $60,000 happens under the very nose of the railroad agents and a guard is killed the railroad arranges a setup to catch the “Phantom Robber.” The Monogram Production was directed by Howard Bretherton and had a lot of stock footage of trains running as well as station location shots. The screenplay had enough good ideas to keep this 60+ minute film moving along. Cleveland had a great character actor role as a drunken suspect and ‘B’ movie cowboy actor King did an adequate job as a railroad agent. Reynolds role was really a bit of a reach and of course she falls in love with King and they are married at the end but that is Hollywood.George Cleveland, a wonderful character, best known for his role in Lassie plays an alcoholic who delivers dead bodies to Montreal from New York. His small scenes break the film up a little and overall helps the film. This film is available at a low cost from Alpha Video (ALP 4694) and is a better entry in the Monogram film library. The sound and picture while not the greatest are acceptable. I’ve included an audio clip of the main title. If I were rating the film with only ‘B’ movies it would get a much higher rating but in an overall mix it is an ordinary mystery film. (**)





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