HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Dreams on Fire
Sing as We Go!
Burnt Orange Heresy, The
Craft Legacy, The
Eye of the Storm
Inflatable Sex Doll of the Wastelands
Where No Vultures Fly
Come True
Kagemusha
Justine
Poly Styrene: I Am a Cliché
Madchen in Uniform
Fire Will Come
Suspect
Jailbreak Pact
News of the World
Dementer
Beyond Clueless
Stylist, The
Sky is On Fire, The
Wrong Turn
In a Year with 13 Moons
Blush
Strange Affair of Uncle Harry, The
Sinners, The
Tammy and the T-Rex
Archenemy
Zappa
Mindwarp
State Secret
Mogul Mowgli
Owners, The
Twentieth Century, The
Story of Gilbert and Sullivan, The
What Lies Below
Greenland
Broil
Dead Pigs
Willy's Wonderland
It's in the Air
   
 
Newest Articles
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
Network Double Bills: The House in Nightmare Park and The Man Who Haunted Himself
Newley Minted: The Strange World of Gurney Slade on Blu-ray
Bad Love: The Night Porter on Blu-ray
Brevity is the Soul of Weird: Short Sharp Shocks on Blu-ray
Get Your Ass to Mars: Total Recall on Blu-ray
Call the Professionals: Le Cercle Rouge on Blu-ray
When There's No More Room in Hell: Dawn of the Dead on Blu-ray
The Butterfly Effect: Mothra on Blu-ray
   
 
  Mystery Junction Spite Carriage
Year: 1951
Director: Michael McCarthy
Stars: Sydney Tafler, Barbara Murray, Martin Benson, Patricia Owens, Christine Silver, David Davies, Charles Irwin, Philip Dale, Pearl Cameron, John Salew, Ewen Solon, Denis Webb, Cyril Smith, Sydney Moncton, Stanley Rose
Genre: ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: On this wintry night, Larry Gordon (Sydney Tafler) is on a train trying to catch up with some shut-eye when he can’t help but notice the little old lady sitting opposite him in the compartment keeps glancing and peering at him over the top of her book. He also notes the book has his photograph on it, for it is one he has written, being a thriller writer with a strong following which evidently numbers Miss Owens (Christine Silver) among them, so eventually she can contain her excitement no longer and asks him if he is who she thinks he is. He wearily confirms it, and she enthusiastically requests him to sign her novel, then quizzes him on how he gets his ideas and what he does with them once he has them. However, just as he is in full flow, they are both alarmed to hear a loud scream that sounds outside the window, and are moved to investigate…

The fascination a certain era in British thrillers had for the possibilities of railway travel was also in full flow when Mystery Junction was released, indeed there had at least been a good twenty years of them by this stage, including benchmarks in the genre like Rome Express or The Lady Vanishes, and if this minor B-movie was not up to those standards, addicts of vintage mysteries would find much to appreciate. Although the action began on the train carriage, it didn’t stay there, betraying the influence of the granddaddy of these sorts of suspense pieces, The Ghost Train, the theatrical play penned by Dad’s Army star Arnold Ridley, adapted and frankly ripped off often, and also set for much of its story in a station in the middle of nowhere, all the better to isolate the characters and ramp up the tension.

You may ask what the point of building a train station in the middle of nowhere would be since the point of these establishments is to get passengers from one place where there are a lot of people to another, but that need not detain us here, all we needed to know was there was a murderer on Larry’s train and now he was stuck with them as the facts began to be cleared up. Mind you, for a film lasting just over an hour, they didn’t get cleared up too far for they started out as a simple enough puzzle to solve and wound up a convoluted mix of connections between all the passengers that it may or may not have been worth your while to figure out. In the early stages in the carriage, we were introduced to the cast of characters as Larry and Miss Owens performed some amateur sleuthing, quickly finding the guard had been attacked and his jacket stolen – but to what possible purpose?

Also on the train were showbiz sister act Pat Dawn (theatre great Barbara Murray, essentially the leading lady) and Mabel (Patricia Owens, who would end the decade married to the scientist who became The Fly) and a cop transporting a dangerous criminal, though it turns out the actual dangerous criminal was Steve Harding (Martin Benson, already typecast as the villain) who starts ordering everyone around once they reach the waiting room. This has naturally been cut off by the snowstorm, leading to a proto-The Thing set-up in the drama, not least when suddenly the lights go out and somebody is shot dead: was one of the passengers responsible, or is there an outside party hanging about preparing to pick them off? In truth, this started better than it concluded, as if writer and director Michael McCarthy allowed what should have been fairly simple to get away from him, and the actual punchline to the story was cute, but not exactly satisfying. However, if you wanted what amounted to a filmed radio play equivalent, then Mystery Junction was amusing enough. Music by Hubert Clifford.

[Nice print on this Network DVD, which has a gallery as its sole extra.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 1861 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Stately Wayne Manor
Enoch Sneed
  Geraint Morgan
   

 

Last Updated: