Review: ‘I Wake Up Screaming’

Most murder mysteries are B's regardless of budget, but this one is an exception to the rule. The director, H. Bruce Humberstone, has been equipped with a good script [from Steve Fisher's novel] and from his cast has obtained results that are all that may be asked in a murder meller with a romantic strain of more than ordinary strength.

Most murder mysteries are B’s regardless of budget, but this one is an exception to the rule. The director, H. Bruce Humberstone, has been equipped with a good script [from Steve Fisher’s novel] and from his cast has obtained results that are all that may be asked in a murder meller with a romantic strain of more than ordinary strength.

Victor Mature plays in a tougher groove than usual. This time he’s a sports promoter who is dogged by a detective who loses his girl (Carole Landis) when Mature takes her from obscurity and glamourizes her to the point where she wins a film contract. The murder of this girl then provides the premise for the remainder of the yarn. Betty Grable is enormously appealing here as the sister of the slain girl.

Dwight Taylor, who did the script, has dotted it with trenchant dialog. There isn’t much comedy, but no more than the few laughs included are needed in this instance. Force of the melodramatic and romantic features of the yarn is sufficient.

I Wake Up Screaming

Production

20th Century-Fox. Director H. Bruce Humberstone; Producer Milton Sperling; Screenplay Dwight Taylor; Camera Edward Cronjager; Editor Robert Simpson; Music Cyril J. Mockridge (dir.); Art Director Richard Day, Nathan Juran

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1942. Running time: 81 MIN.

With

Betty Grable Victor Mature Carole Landis Laird Cregar William Gargan Alan Mowbray
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