The Kennel Murder Case was the fifth film in the Philo Vance series, but it’s easily the best of the bunch, and it proved influential in encouraging the production of other intricate, challenging mystery films. Directed with crispness and efficiency by the reliable Michael Curtiz, the film is a good example of the high production standards of Warner Bros. in its post-silent era. The script is a solid whodunit packed with interesting characters, well-performed and impeccably cast. Much of the verbosity of S. S. Van Dine’s novel is missing from Kennel Murder Case, making for a briskly told story.
William Powell, Mary Astor, Eugene Pallette, Ralph Morgan, Helen Vinson
1933, B&W, 73 minutes