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Murder on the Blackboard (1934)

Passed | | Comedy, Drama, Mystery | 15 June 1934 (USA)
A pretty young music teacher is bludgeoned to death in Hildegarde's school, where she's reunited with Oscar, but the autopsy report says she was dying from poison too.

Director:

George Archainbaud

Writers:

Willis Goldbeck (screenplay), Stuart Palmer (story)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Edna May Oliver ... Hildegarde Withers
James Gleason ... Inspector Oscar Piper
Bruce Cabot ... Addison 'Ad' Stevens
Gertrude Michael ... Jane Davis
Regis Toomey ... Detective Smiley North
Edgar Kennedy ... Detective Donahue
Tully Marshall ... Mr. MacFarland
Jackie Searl ... Leland Stanford Jones
Frederick Vogeding Frederick Vogeding ... Otto Schweitzer, the Janitor (as Fredrik Vogeding)
Barbara Fritchie ... Louise Halloran
Gustav von Seyffertitz ... Dr. Max Von Immen
Tom Herbert Tom Herbert ... Detective McTeague
Jed Prouty ... Dr. Levine
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Storyline

There are plenty of guilty secrets at the school where Hildegarde Withers teaches. When she finds the body of the pretty music teacher, she calls in her old friend Inspector Piper, who promptly arrests the obvious suspect. Clues multiply and everyone looks suspicious as Piper and Miss Withers continue their battle of the sexes. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 June 1934 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Det mystiske Tegn See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the last scene of The Penguin Pool Murders (the previous film), Inspector Oscar Piper proposes to Hildegarde Withers, and they dash out the door to get a marriage license. However, the two characters are not married in this sequel or the one which follows. In fact, there's no mention of an engagement, and the characters give no indication that they're romantically involved. See more »

Goofs

Two wide-mouthed bottles appear out of nowhere on Miss Halloran's desk as Miss Withers searches it. See more »

Quotes

Taxi Driver: Ain't ya getting careless, lady? You gave me a dime too much.
Hildegarde Withers: A dime's a dime, young man. Remember, you're a taxi driver, not a gigolo.
See more »

Connections

Followed by Forty Naughty Girls (1937) See more »

Soundtracks

The Sidewalks of New York
Music by Charles Lawlor (1894)
Played after the credits
See more »

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User Reviews

Good Mystery
27 February 2008 | by Michael_ElliottSee all my reviews

Murder on the Blackboard (1934)

*** (out of 4)

The second of six films in RKO's Hildegarde Withers (Edna May Oliver) series has the wannabe detective working at a school when a music teacher is shot dead. Inspector Oscar Piper (James Gleason) is soon helping on the case, which features the usual suspects including one played by Bruce Cabot. I've got the first film in the series, Penguin Pool Murder, recorded but haven't watched it yet so this is the first film from the series that I've actually watched. There's nothing overly special about this film but it does stand apart from the countless other mystery films of the decade. For one, Edna May Oliver plays her role pretty well and while it's somewhat over the top she never goes way past that line to where the character becomes obnoxious. She manages to bring a few laughs to the film and keeps the film going throughout. The actual mystery is also done pretty well with some nice atmosphere trapped in the small school.


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