Whistling In The Dark

  • 1941
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Comedy, Mystery

Red Skelton became a star with this surprise hit in which he plays a radio sleuth known as "The Fox" ("Ah-wooooo, I'm the Fox!"). The film opens with a spooky scene on the moonlit grounds of Silver Haven, a mansion where Veidt heads a phony religious cult. He conducts funeral ceremonies for one of his devotees, Clement, and believes that he is to collect...read more

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Red Skelton became a star with this surprise hit in which he plays a radio sleuth known as "The Fox" ("Ah-wooooo, I'm the Fox!"). The film opens with a spooky scene on the moonlit grounds of Silver Haven, a mansion where Veidt heads a phony religious cult. He conducts funeral ceremonies

for one of his devotees, Clement, and believes that he is to collect her million dollar fortune. A wrench is thrown into the works, however, when Veidt learns that the money is still controlled by Corrigan, Clement's nephew, until his death. Ragland, another of Veidt's followers, suggests they

murder Corrigan. Veidt hits upon the scheme of kidnaping Skelton, a famous radio detective, and forcing him to work out the perfect murder. To further convince Skelton, Veidt also abducts Rutherford, Skelton's radio-actress girl friend, and Grey, the daughter of Skelton's sponsor. Unwillingly,

Skelton plans a murder involving an undetectable poison to be put in Corrigan's toothpaste. Veidt's henchmen put the plan into operation, leaving Skelton, Rutherford, and Grey locked in a room at the mansion with the phone wires cut and the door guarded by huge, ominous housekeeper Aldrich. The

three work out a scheme in which they somehow connect the phone wires to the radio and do their broadcast and call the police from where they're held, putting in subtle (and not-so-subtle) warnings to Corrigan ("Do not...brush...your teeth!") who is on an airplane flying across the country. The

plan works, Corrigan doesn't brush his teeth, the police arrive to rescue Skelton and the others, and Veidt and his followers are carted off to the pokey. Skelton had been signed to an MGM contract a couple of years earlier and had made some appearances as comic relief in various vehicles, as well

as creating a running character in the DR. KILDARE series, but this was his first starring vehicle, actually a remake of a 1933 film with Ernest Truex, and MGM found it had a surprise hit on its hands. Skelton is as good here as he ever got, clever and funny, and the others do their jobs well,

especially Veidt and Arden, Skelton's manager. Two sequels followed, WHISTLING IN DIXIE (1942) and WHISTLING IN BROOKLYN (1943).

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Red Skelton became a star with this surprise hit in which he plays a radio sleuth known as "The Fox" ("Ah-wooooo, I'm the Fox!"). The film opens with a spooky scene on the moonlit grounds of Silver Haven, a mansion where Veidt heads a phony religious cult.… (more)

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