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The Silk Express (1933)

Passed | | Drama, Mystery, Thriller | 10 June 1933 (USA)
A trainload of silk puts Neil Hamilton on the fast track to murder in this full-throttle thrill ride costarring Sheila Terry and Guy Kibbee. As the demand for raw silk goes sky high, ... See full summary »


Ray Enright


Houston Branch (story), Houston Branch (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


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Complete credited cast:
Neil Hamilton ... Donald Kilgore
Sheila Terry ... Paula Nyberg
Arthur Byron ... Conductor Clark
Guy Kibbee ... Railway Detective McDuff
Dudley Digges ... Professor Axel Nyberg
Arthur Hohl ... Wallace Myton
Allen Jenkins ... Robert 'Rusty' Griffith
Harold Huber ... Train Guard Craft
G. Pat Collins ... Train Guard Harry Burns (as George Pat Collins)
Robert Barrat ... Mr. Calhoun, Attorney
Vernon Steele ... Dr. Harold Rolph
Ivan F. Simpson ... Johnson, Kilgore's Secretary (as Ivan Simpson)


A trainload of silk puts Neil Hamilton on the fast track to murder in this full-throttle thrill ride costarring Sheila Terry and Guy Kibbee. As the demand for raw silk goes sky high, crooked businessman Wallace Myton (Arthur Hohl) corners the market with plans to drive up the price. Determined to fulfill his contracts, manufacturer Donald Kilgore (Hamilton) imports $3 million worth of silk to Seattle and accompanies it by special train to New York. But when his secretary is found murdered, Kilgore soon discovers Myton has planted three killers on board with orders to stop the express and its passengers dead in their tracks. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Passed | See all certifications »






Release Date:

10 June 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mysteriet på Silkeexpressen See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

Strange Mystery
21 March 2012 | by Michael_ElliottSee all my reviews

The Silk Express (1933)

** (out of 4)

A rather bizarre murder/mystery about a businessman who makes the price of silk go sky high on the market so Donald Kilgore (Neil Hamilton) calls him into his office and threatens that if he doesn't bring the price down everyone's going to start importing from Japan. The business owners decide to import the product so it boards a train in Seatle and makes the journey to New York but along a way a murder occurs and it's clear someone doesn't want the train to arrive. Whenever one of these murder/mysteries show up on Turner Classic Movies I try to watch them and quite often it appears that most of them are working off the same formula so I'll at least give THE SILK EXPRESS some credit because I can't think of another movie where the battle is over imported silk. Outside of that there's very little in this film that works because it really drags along with a poor pace even at just 61-miutes. I think the biggest problem is the actual story and that includes the silk. While this might be an original topic I can't say it's an entertaining one. The entire time it's hard to get caught up in the story simply because you really don't care about what's at the heart of it. Even worse is that there's simply not enough reason to care about who the killer is and the number of red herrings is more than the actual running time. Hamilton is energetic in the lead but he's not given much to do. Arthur Byron plays the part as if he's angry at the world. Sheila Terry is the quick love interest. Guy Kibbee plays a redneck detective who is exited at finally getting to solve a murder. Several other Warner contract players show up but the most interesting casting is that of Allen Jenkins. I won't spoil what he plays but it's quite a twist and especially the look he has going for himself.

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