Terror at Midnight


1h 10m 1956

Film Details

Also Known As
And Suddenly You Run
Release Date
Apr 27, 1956
Premiere Information
Los Angeles opening: 12 Apr 1956
Production Company
Republic Pictures Corp.
Distribution Company
Republic Pictures Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 10m
Film Length
8 reels

Synopsis

When police officer Neal "Rick" Rickards is promoted to the homicide division, he learns that the appointment is contingent upon his continued good record, and that of his soon-to-be wife Susan Lang. Rick and Susan share a celebratory dinner together after which Rick loans Susan his so that she can go house-hunting the next day. After dropping Rick off at his apartment, Susan is involved in an accident when a night watchman, riding a bicycle, collides with the car. The accident is witnessed by another driver, Speegie, who examines the watchman, jots down the car's licence number then advises Susan to leave in order to avoid trouble from the watchman. Susan drives off and later, after the watchman recovers, the police ask if anyone saw the car's licence plate number and Speegie lies that he did not. Meanwhile, Susan drives to Fred Hill's auto repair shop and arranges to pickup her repaired car the following afternoon. Unknown to Susan, Hill is involved in a stolen car racket with two crooks, Lew Hanlon and Nick Mascotti, who are concerned that Hill's alcoholic wife Helen might talk too much about their activities. While Susan waits for a taxi, Hill, a womanizer, learns that the police are looking for a car matching the description of Rick's and attempts to hustle Susan. When she returns the next day, Hill informs her that the car will not be ready until later that evening. At dinner, Susan tells Rick that she has found an excellent apartment for them, but has had to leave his car at a garage due to carburetor trouble. When Rick returns to his apartment, he finds Speegie waiting for him. Speegie has traced the car to Rick and tries to blackmail him for five hundred dollars, but leaves immediately upon discovering that Rick is a police officer. When Susan returns for the car, Hill attempts to assault her, but Susan manages to escape, losing several items from her handbag in the melee. Just then, Helen, suspecting her husband of being with a woman, enters from a back alley. After Susan drives off in Rick's car, Hill shoves Helen to the floor and tells her to leave. As Hill works at his bench, Helen quietly returns and, when Hill's back is toward her, drives a truck into him, killing him. In the middle of the night, Rick receives a phone call summoning him to a homicide at the garage, where Lt. Conway and Sgt. Brazzi have already established that an agitated woman was seen driving away from the repair shop. They have also found fragments of a broken taillight that match those found at the hit-and-run scene, as well as the items from Susan's handbag, which Rick recognizes. The next morning, when they meet for breakfast, Rick questions Susan and she explains that, although the accident involving the cyclist was not her fault, she feared that it might affect Rick's career. After reassuring her that the watchman was not seriously injured, Rick informs her that she is a suspect in Hill's murder. When Rick offers to resign from the force, his captain rejects his resignation and tells him to try to clear Susan's name. Rick and Susan then visit Helen to see if Susan can identify Helen's voice as the woman's voice she heard at the garage. Unable to tie Helen to the crime scene, they leave, but Susan takes Helen's identical handbag with her by mistake. Helen then phones Hanlon, tells him she has to leave town and, threatening to tell the police about the stolen car racket, demands five thousand dollars. Hanlon then decides to kill Helen. When Susan discovers she has the wrong handbag, she returns alone to the Hill house and arrives just as Hanlon and Mascotti are driving away. Inside the house, she finds Helen's dead body and is then discovered by a liquor deliveryman. Meanwhile, at the garage, Conway and Brazzi are showing Rick evidence they have found concerning the stolen car racket, when they receive news of Helen's death and Susan's arrest. After Susan realizes that she had seen Helen's assailants at the garage, she is able to describe their car and a radio bulletin is broadcast to all police units. A motorcycle policeman spots the car and chases after it, alerting other units including Rick, who is in a squad car with his old partner, George Flynn. Hanlon and Mascotti crash through a road barrier, but are pursued by Rick and George and gunshots are exchanged between the two vehicles. Eventually, the crooks's car comes to dead end and, when Mascotti attempts to run away, Rick shoots him. Hanlon is then arrested. Later, physical evidence proves Susan innocent of all major charges and Rick remains on the force.

Film Details

Also Known As
And Suddenly You Run
Release Date
Apr 27, 1956
Premiere Information
Los Angeles opening: 12 Apr 1956
Production Company
Republic Pictures Corp.
Distribution Company
Republic Pictures Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 10m
Film Length
8 reels

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

The working title of this film was And Suddenly You Run.