Private Detective


55m 1939
Private Detective

Brief Synopsis

Rival detectives fall in love when they're forced to work together.

Film Details

Also Known As
The Lady Detective, The Lady Dick
Genre
Romance
Mystery
Release Date
Dec 9, 1939
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Distribution Company
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Country
United States
Screenplay Information
Based on the short story "Invitation to Murder" by Kay Krausse in Pocket Detective Magazine (May 1937).

Technical Specs

Duration
55m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
4,988ft (6 reels)

Synopsis

When Millard Lannon sues his ex-wife Mona for custody of their young son Bobby, Simmy Sanger, the owner of the Nation-Wide Detective Agency, orders his best detective, intrepid Myrna "Jinx" Winslow, to testify against Mona. Jinx protests, because Lannon is an uncaring parent who wants custody of his son only to have access to the child's huge trust fund, which was left to him by Lannon's father. Infuriated by Sanger's demand, Jinx decides to quit and marry her longtime boyfriend, Jim Rickey, a police lieutenant who has tried for years to induce her to give up her career. Jim is thrilled when Jinx arrives at police headquarters and tells him that she wishes to be married that night, but she is distracted when she overhears an incoming call from Lannon, who is demanding police protection because Mona has threatend his life. The demand is actually a scheme to frame Mona by Lannon's lawyer, Nat Flavin, who shoots and kills Lannon at his townhouse later that night. Mona, who has just been pleading with Lannon to drop his custody suit in exchange for a monthly allowance, is seen leaving his townhouse as the gunshot is heard by a neighbor woman. After tagging along as Jim and his assistant Brody investigate, Jinx finds Mona hiding in a cheap hotel. When Jinx tells Mona that the police suspect her fiancé, Donald Norton, Mona lies and states that she is the killer. Believing Mona to be innocent, Jinx helps her escape from Jim and Brody, then finds Don. In the meantime, Flavin is trying to persuade Don to employ him as Mona's defense lawyer and to turn her in, but they are interrupted by the arrival of Jim and Brody. Don gets Jim's gun and escapes, then is aided by Jinx, who believes him when he states that although he is innocent, he will confess to the murder to protect Mona. Determined to help Mona and Don, Jinx questions Flavin the next morning and learns that he has had himself appointed Bobby's legal guardian. Jim castigates Jinx for interfering in the case, but she nonetheless finds crucial evidence confirming Flavin's guilt in his office later that night. She types up a report stating that Flavin killed Lannon and framed Mona in order to get Bobby's trust fund, but as she is telling Jim on the telephone to meet her at the office, Flavin arrives. Flavin knocks Jinx out and takes her to his beach house, where he is greeted by his confederate, Chick Jerome, who was Lannon's chauffeur. While the unconscious Jinx is placed in a running car in a garage, Mona and Don arrive and give Flavin a retainer so that he will defend them. Jerome is about to give the couple poisoned drinks when Jim and Brady burst in. The policemen had found Jinx's report in Flavin's office, then rescued her before she was asphyxiated in the garage. After a struggle, Jim and Brody capture Flavin and Jerome, and a weary but happy Jinx tells Jim that she would rather be married than be a detective.

Film Details

Also Known As
The Lady Detective, The Lady Dick
Genre
Romance
Mystery
Release Date
Dec 9, 1939
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Distribution Company
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Country
United States
Screenplay Information
Based on the short story "Invitation to Murder" by Kay Krausse in Pocket Detective Magazine (May 1937).

Technical Specs

Duration
55m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
4,988ft (6 reels)

Articles

Private Detective


Rival detectives fall in love when they're forced to work together.
Private Detective

Private Detective

Rival detectives fall in love when they're forced to work together.

Quotes

Jack, when are you going to use your head for something besides a place to put your hat?
- Myrna 'Jinx' Winslow

Trivia

Notes

The working titles of this film were Lady Dick, The Lady Detective and The Lady Dick. Hollywood Reporter production charts include Don Douglas in the cast, but his participation in the completed film has not been confirmed. Reviews noted that this picture was fashioned after Warner Bros.' "Torchy Blane" series.