Time Out for Murder


60m 1938

Brief Synopsis

A bank runner (Kellard) is accused of killing a woman (Hussey) for whom he deposited a large amount. Reporter (Stuart) and bank official (Stuart) investigate.

Film Details

Also Known As
Meridian 7-1212
Release Date
Sep 23, 1938
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Distribution Company
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
60m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
5,367ft (6 reels)

Synopsis

Johnny Martin, a messenger for his uncle Phillip Gregory's bank, visits his fiancée, Helen Thomas, who announces the time for telephone callers. Johnny then delivers a bank statement to Peggy Norton, who lives in a fancy New York apartment, and sees racketeer Dutch Moran leave the apartment. Johnny helps Peggy open a locked desk drawer with his knife, which breaks. She then gives him a case of jewels from the drawer, and after she takes out a diamond brooch, asks him to take the case to the bank for her because she is going on a trip. Shortly after this, a man calls the hotel operator from Peggy's apartment and asks for the correct time. The operator says that is 1:40, and the man argues that it is two o'clock and then asks for an outside line so he can call for the correct time. The operator hears the time announced as two o'clock and then hears a gunshot through the receiver. Peggy is found murdered, and Johnny is arrested because he has her jewels, and his fingerprints and broken knife are found in the apartment. Meanwhile, bill collector Margie Ross tries to collect fifteen dollars from reporter Barney Callahan. Barney's roommate Snapper, a photographer who calls for the time every few minutes because he has fallen in love with Helen's voice, hears Helen crying over the telephone, and Barney, aware of the murder, decides to investigate. To make sure that she gets the fifteen dollars, Margie accompanies him. Barney suspects that Johnny is guilty, but Margie locates records from a credit association, which indicate that Dutch paid one of Peggy's bills. Because Dutch is his friend, Barney does not go to the police with this information. After Barney, Margie and Snapper find a recording needle in Peggy's apartment and evidence that Dutch had been there, Margie goes to Dutch's club posing as an applicant for a job. She is recognized as Barney's associate, however, and Dutch takes her to Barney's apartment, where two of Dutch's men, Eddie and Blackie, are holding Barney and Snapper. Dutch reprimands his men and admits to Barney that he was a friend of Peggy's, but says he suspects that her murderer was Gregory, who gave her money and with whom she had a row. Dutch brings Gregory to his lakeside hideout, where Blackie and Barney have gone to meet him. Meanwhile, Margie returns to Dutch's club and then hides in Dutch's car when she learns that he is going to meet Barney. Instead, Eddie, planning to break with Dutch, and another gangster, use the car to hold up an armored truck. After crashing through a roadblock, they are pursued by police, who shoot the other gangster. When their car crashes, Eddie takes Margie to the hideout, thinking that it is empty. Meanwhile, Gregory has confessed to Barney, Snapper and Dutch that he planned to kill Peggy and implicate Johnny, but that after he called the hotel's switchboard operator and played the record announcing the time as two o'clock, he heard a shot and saw another man leave. He recognizes Eddie as the man he saw and notices Peggy's brooch on Eddie's person. Eddie shoots Dutch and escapes, but Dutch, from a window, shoots Eddie. Barney learns from Eddie before he dies that he was Peggy's ex-husband and was blackmailing her; she refused to give him her jewelry, so he killed her. After Barney learns that Dutch will recover, Margie tries to deliver a writ of repossession for Barney and Snapper's furniture. When Barney says he that could learn to pay his bills and asks could she go for him, she says to call if he ever does learn, and they kiss.

Film Details

Also Known As
Meridian 7-1212
Release Date
Sep 23, 1938
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Distribution Company
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
60m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
5,367ft (6 reels)

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

The working title of this film was Meridian 7-1212. This was the first in Twentieth Century-Fox's "Roving Reporter" series. The other two films of the series, While New York Sleeps (see below) and Inside Story, were both released in 1939 and feature Michael Whalen and Chick Chandler.