Killer at Large
Cast & Crew
After Linda Allen is promoted to store detective at Whitley's department store, she must endure the taunts of her fiancé, Tommy Braddock, who works in the jewelry department and wants her to quit her job so that they can be married. Despite Tommy's aspersions on her competency, Linda catches a shoplifter, Kate, who steals a compact after getting Tommy to show her some valuable diamond bracelets in the store's vault. Tommy is reprimanded by the store superintendent, William Bentley, for his carelessness, while Linda is praised for her sharp eyes. Bentley lets Kate go with a warning, then tells Tommy that he will be held responsible for any further losses. Later that night, Linda goes to the store to meet Tommy, who is staying late to attend a meeting and then inventory the vault. When she arrives, she finds Tommy staring at the vault, which has been robbed, and at Bentley, who has been murdered. Inspector O'Hara and Sergeant Kelly arrive to investigate and immediately suspect Tommy, despite his protests that he was taking a walk while the crime was committed. O'Hara agrees not to arrest Tommy if Linda keeps an eye on him, and then assigns Kelly to follow the couple in case they know something they are not revealing. Linda suspects that the culprit is Mr. Zero, an unusual entertainer who has been working in the store's front display window. Zero manufactures waxwork figures, then stands with the mannequins in the window while passersby try to guess which one is real. While Linda discovers that it was possible for Zero to see the combination as Tommy opened the vault for Kate, Zero is at his waxworks, scolding Kate for endangering his plans by shoplifting. Upset that Zero killed Bentley, Kate demands her share of the loot before she leaves, but Zero kills her. Kelly summons the police when Linda and Tommy go to the waxworks, where Zero, posing as a mannequin, overhears Linda tell O'Hara about the strange man's involvement. Kate's body and the stolen jewels are found, and O'Hara, certain that Zero is insane, fears that the killer will seek revenge on Tommy and Linda. Despite the police's efforts to protect them, Zero makes two attempts on the young couple's lives, and is thwarted only by chance. Finally, O'Hara and Linda set a trap for Zero by having the couple drive to the remote inn where they normally have Sunday dinner. Knowing that Zero is aware of their habits, Linda is sure that he will try to attack them during the drive. Her prediction comes true when Zero tries to shoot them, but Kelly, who is hiding in the backseat of the car, kills Zero with a machine gun. Soon after, reporters crowd around Tommy and Linda for information on the story, and Tommy tells them that Linda will be retiring to devote all of her attention to her soon-to-be husband.
Charles R. Moore
Lon Chaney Jr.
The working title of this film was Poker Face, and the print viewed was entitled Killers on the Loose.