Date with Disaster (1957)

UK / 60 minutes / bw / Fortress, Eros Dir: Charles Saunders  Pr: Guido Coen Scr: Brock Williams Cine: Brendan Stafford Cast: Tom Drake, William Hartnell, Shirley Eaton, Maurice Kaufmann, Michael Golden, Richard Shaw, Deirdre Mayne, Charles Brodie, Peter Fontaine, Robert Robinson, John Drake, Robert Mooney, Van Boolen, Hubert Hill

A neat little piece of UK borderline noir that must have been a very welcome second feature back in the day. Indeed, it was B-features of this kind and caliber, not to mention all the EDGAR WALLACE MYSTERIES and Edgar Lustgarten’s cheesy true-crime shorts, that first made me a dedicated cinemagoer. Sad that there’s no room for such stuff in the modern multiplex.

Miles Harrington (Tom Drake) came to the UK for the love of a British girl. She dumped him cruelly but somehow he never quite went home, and now he holds a secret torch for her kid sister Sue Miller (Eaton)—as does she for him. Trouble is, Sue’s going steady with Miles’s business partner Don Redman (Kaufmann).

William Hartnell as Tracey

Shirley Eaton as Sue

Miles and Don run a used-car dealership, Highgrade Autosales, in London. While Miles himself is as straight as a die, the same can’t be said for Continue reading

Hideout, The (1956)

The Hideout 1956 - 0b other opener

UK / 55 minutes / bw / Major, Rank Dir: Peter Graham Scott Pr: John Temple-Smith Scr: Kenneth Hayles Cine: Brendan J. Stafford Cast: Dermot Walsh, Rona Anderson, Ronald Howard, Sam Kydd, Howard Lang, Edwin Richfield, Arnold Diamond, Trevor Reid, Richard Shaw, Tommy Clegg, Jessica Cairns, Frank Hawkins, Jack Taylor, Angela Krefeld.

The Hideout 1956 - 0a opener

A modest piece of UK noir with a convoluted plot that seems to make reasonable sense at the time but becomes harder to follow the more you think about it later.

At the Rex Hotel in London, a valise that was being carried by Helen Grant (Anderson) is accidentally put into the taxi that’s going to take Pan–Atlantic Insurance special investigator Steve Curry (Walsh) to the airport for his New York flight. Steve doesn’t discover the error until he’s at the airport; luckily Tim Bowers (Kydd), whom he’s recently helped out of a jam, came along to see him off, so can take the case back into town and try to track down the woman who lost it. In so doing, Tim finds the case is full of cash: £8,000, in fact—a very great deal, in 1956.

The Hideout 1956 - 1 Sam Kydd has a more major role than usual, hurrahSam Kydd as Tim Powers; those rare occasions when Kydd gets a more major role are always good news.

At the airport, Steve is abducted by some thugs, who attempt to beat out of him the location of the valise. He escapes, makes it back to Tim’s apartment, and learns the truth. The inside lid of the case bears a label with the name and address of one Robert Grant. Steve goes there and recognizes Continue reading