Robert Armstrong, Maxine Doyle, and LeRoy Mason in The Mystery Man (1935)


(director: Ray McCarey; screenwriters: John Krafft/Rollo Lloyd/story by Tate Finn; cinematographer: Harry Neumann; editor: Carl Pierson; cast: Robert Armstrong (Larry Doyle), Maxine Doyle (Anne), Henry Kolker (Ellwyn A. Jonas), Guy Usher (District Attorney), James Burke (Managing Editor, Marvin), LeRoy Mason (Eel), James P. Burtis (Whalen), Monte Collins (Dunn), Sam Lufkin (Weeks), Dell Henderson (Hotel manager), Norman Houston (T. Fulton Whistler), Lee Shumway (Plainclothes cop), Otto Fries (Nate, a pawnbroker), Sam Flint (Jerome Roberts, Publisher); Runtime: 65; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Trem Carr; Monogram; 1935)

Directed in a lively manner by Leo’s kid brother Ray McCarey.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Directed in a lively manner by Leo’s kid brother Ray McCarey(“The Devil’s Party”/”The Falcon’s Alibi”). The story by Tate Finn is adapted to the screen by John Krafft and Rollo Lloyd. Editor Ellwyn A. Jonas (Henry Kolker) fires his middle-aged top reporter (Robert Armstrong) for getting drunk in an all-night bash with colleauges Dunn (Monte Collins), Weeks (Sam Lufkin) and Whalen (James P. Burtis). The Chicago reporter wakes up from his drunken binge on a train to St. Louis. In St. Louis Larry forms a platonic relationship with the 20-year-old Anne (Maxine Doyle), a lonely woman he meets in St. Louis. The penniless unemployed reporter gets $50 wired to him by his pals. Larry uses the money to gamble at the casino. There’s a robbery at the nightclub, and Larry replaces the slain getaway driver. Then Larry and Anne hide the robbery money in their hotel room, Larry offers the robbery story as a scoop to the local newspaper. Its managing editor (James Burke) hires him. But things turn bad when the gun used in the heist is traced to Larry, and when trying to clear things up Larry runs into the dangerous Eel (LeRoy Mason). He’s the killer from the heist. The implausible story is nevertheless exciting, and its happy ending is a crowd-pleaser.