QUIET PLEASE, MURDER
1942, 20th Century Fox, 70 min, USA, Dir: John Francis Larkin

George Sanders is at his arrogant best as a master forger who steals a priceless Shakespeare folio while teaming up with femme fatale Gail Jackson. The scene of the crime: the Los Angeles Public Library! An example of the Fox B-unit at its best! Also starring Richard Denning.


THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY
1945, Warner Brothers, 110 min, Dir: Albert Lewin

In the definitive screen adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s sole novel, Dorian Gray (Hurd Hatfield) falls under the corrupting influence of Lord Henry Wotton (George Sanders) and makes a Faustian bargain: Gray’s portrait will age instead of him. Angela Lansbury is a standout as the woman whose heart is broken by the titular narcissist. This macabre fantasy was an Oscar winner for Harry Stradling Sr.’s cinematography (which features shocking flashes of color).


THE LODGER (1944)
1944, 20th Century Fox, 84 min, USA, Dir: John Brahm

The foggy, gas-lit London environs of Jack the Ripper are memorably recreated by director John Brahm and cinematographer Lucien Ballard with a stellar ensemble of 1940s British-Hollywood performers including Merle Oberon, George Sanders and Sir Cedric Hardwicke. Front and center is the mountainously sinister Laird Cregar, whose chilling performance garnered him a tragically brief period of movie stardom. Don’t miss the definitive screen version of Marie Belloc Lowndes’ novel about the infamous Ripper murders on the big screen!


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