Day 4 – The Death Kiss (1932)

Death Kiss posterDay 4: The Death Kiss (1932)
Cast:      Bela Lugosi as Joseph Steiner
David Manners as Franklyn Drew
Adrienne Ames as Marcia Lane
Edward Van Sloan as Tom Avery

Story by Madelon St. Dennis
Produced by E.W. Hammons
Directed by Edwin L. Marin

Plot: Murder is afoot at Tonart Studios as a man is murdered during the filming of the death scene in a move called The Death Kiss. Despites claims it was just an accident from the studio manager Joseph Steiner, the police discover that not everything is adding up. The murder appears to be planned. Will history repeat itself when the death scene goes before the cameras once again?

DK 1Personal Thoughts: This is a fairly routine murder mystery and not necessarily one of the better ones from the time period. The movie plods along with deception and red herrings, including Lugosi’s character of Joseph Steiner. Lugosi has a supporting role and really just gives us a paint-by-number performance without even a moment to shine through and do something original. The most fun is in seeing a large majority of the cast of Dracula (1931). Beyond that, I’d only recommend this for Lugosi purists and a viewing in the background while you are doing something else.

Trivia:

  • Film is in the public domain.
  • When the film was first released, it was only in black and white. Several weeks later, several tinted hand-colored scenes were included in the climax to add a little fun, including flashlights and gunfire.
  • The fictional “Tonart Studios” in the film was actually Tiffany Studios, the company that produced the film.

Death Kiss ColorAvailability:

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