(director: John Reinhardt; screenwriters: Richard Presnell/Peter Milne/based on the story “Inside Job” by Raoul Whitfield; cinematographer: Henry Sharp; editor: Steart S. Frye/William Ziegler; music: Rudy Schrager; cast: Lee Tracy (Hugh Fresney), Julie Bishop (Julie Vaughn), Don Castle (Tim ‘T.M.’ Slade), Anabel Shaw (Dana Jones, publisher’s secretary), Regis Toomey (Inspector O’Haffey), Douglas Walton (Clinton Vaughn), Francis Ford (Pop Garrow), Anthony Warde (Nick Dyke); Runtime: 70; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Jack Wrather; Monogram; 1947)

Lee Tracy plays another newspaper role he can play in his sleep.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Vienna-born Hollywood director John Reinhardt (“Open Secret”/”The Guilty”/”Last Refuge”) helms this hard-hitting newspaper related film noir. It’s based on the story “Inside Job” by Raoul Whitfield, and is written by Richard Presnell and Peter Milne.

Hard-boiled newspaper editor Hugh Fresney (Lee Tracy) and a reporter-turned private detective, Tim Slade (Don Castle), hired to protect him from a gangster who supposedly threatened to kill him, drive off the curved road in Malibu, on the highway to LA, and get trapped in the car that goes off an embankment. The dying editor in his last breathes tells the dick in flashback how his former newspaper boss Clinton Vaughn (Douglas Walton) was murdered. At the time it was thought that the gangster Nick Dyke (Anthony Warde) did the hit, because the paper continually wrote negative things about him. In fact, people thought Hugh hired Tim as a bodyguard in fear of Nick. But things are muddied when Vaughn’s alcoholic widow, Julie (Julie Bishop), the former girlfriend of Tim’s, tries getting back with him and opens up how Hugh was hubby’s rival.

The investigating officer, Inspector O’Haffey (Regis Toomey), is puzzled by the clues but buys into Tim’s opinion that Hugh had a motive to kill the publisher, as he wanted control of the newspaper. Tim believes he was hired to divert attention away from the real killer.

It ends, with Tim freeing himself from the wreck and Hugh’s body gets washed out to sea during high tide.

What’s new? Lee Tracy plays another newspaper role he can play in his sleep.

REVIEWED ON 9/7/2014 GRADE: B-  https://dennisschwartzreviews.com/