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Miss Pinkerton (1932)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Mystery, Thriller | 30 July 1932 (USA)
A hospital nurse is recruited by the police to watch a household where a suspicious death has occurred.


Lloyd Bacon


Mary Roberts Rinehart (novel), Niven Busch (adaptation) | 2 more credits »

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Complete credited cast:
Joan Blondell ... Nurse Adams, aka Miss Pinkerton
George Brent ... Police Inspector Patten
Ruth Hall ... Paula Brent
John Wray ... Hugo
Elizabeth Patterson ... Juliet Mitchell
C. Henry Gordon ... Dr. Stuart
Holmes Herbert ... Arthur Glenn
Mary Doran ... Florence Lenz
Blanche Friderici ... Mary
Mae Madison ... Second Nurse
Allan Lane ... Herbert Wynn (scenes deleted)
Nigel De Brulier ... Coroner James A. Clemp (as Nigel de Brulier)
Eulalie Jensen ... Miss Gibbons - Superintendent of Nurses
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Lucien Littlefield ... Henderson (scenes deleted)


Scion of the once-rich Mitchell family, Herbert Wynn is found shot to death. Nurse Adams, bored by hospital routine, is recruited by the police to ferret out clues as she tends to Wynn's elderly aunt Julia. Jokingly given the 'rank' of Miss Pinkerson, after the famous detective agency, Adams probes into the mystery, but not before a second death. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Not Rated






Release Date:

30 July 1932 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fasornas hus See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


[All goofs for this title are spoilers.] See more »


Nurse Adams, aka Miss Pinkerton: Here's a dollar, keep the change.
Taxi Driver: There is no change.
Nurse Adams, aka Miss Pinkerton: Then we're even.
See more »


Version of The Nurse's Secret (1941) See more »

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User Reviews

Good mystery but little chemistry here...
20 March 2010 | by AlsExGalSee all my reviews

...specifically between Joan Blondell and George Brent. These are two players whose performances and films I generally enjoy immensely, but here the two just seem to be acting at each other rather than with each other. It's hard to describe unless you actually see it.

Blondell plays a nurse in a hospital - Nurse Adams - who is bored with hospital routine. One night she gets picked by the head nurse to be private nurse for the night to an old woman who has had a terrible shock - the old woman found the body of her nephew shortly after he had been shot with his own gun. Was it suicide? Was it murder? If it was murder, what was the motive? These are the questions surrounding the mystery of the unnatural death of Herbert Wynn. There is also the complication of Herbert Wynn's life being insured for one hundred thousand dollars payable to his aunt, and that his family - once wealthy - is now on the verge of bankruptcy and ruin. So, there is just as much a motive for making the suicide look accidental - or like a murder - as there is reason for making any murder that has occurred look like a suicide or accident. Life insurance doesn't pay out for suicide.

Enter George Brent, a police detective on the case that takes an immediate liking to Nurse Adams and dubs her "Miss Pinkerton". I could never really figure that one out, unless it has something to do with the famous Scottish detective whose name is often a pseudonym for detective. This is really an old dark house tale mixed in with elements of the Thin Man. From the old dark house side of things we have a creepy mansion with creepier inhabitants and mysterious locked rooms. From the Thin Man tradition of mysteries - which actually wasn't made for two years after this film - we have everybody shooting darting and knowing glances at everyone else and looking guilty and somewhat conspiratorial.

The rather complex plot will keep you interested, but you'll likely be disappointed with the romance and partnership end of things between Blondell and Brent. They were both capable of having tremendous chemistry with other leading ladies and men, just not with each other and certainly not in this film. Recommended, but with reservations.

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