DVD 58 mins IMDB 6.9
Second Floor Mystery, The
In Collection

Seen It:
Comedy, Mystery
USA  /  English

Grant Withers Geoffrey West
Loretta Young Marion Ferguson
H.B. Warner Inspector Bray
Claire McDowell Aunt Hattie
Sidney Bracey Alfred
Crauford Kent Capt. Fraser-Freer
John Loder Fraser-Freer's Younger Brother
Claude King Enright
Judith Vosselli The Vamp
Cosmo Kyrle Bellew Wilson

Director Roy Del Ruth
Writer Earl Derr Biggers; Joseph Jackson

Geoffrey West and Marian Ferguson, Americans who see each other in a London hotel, begin a series of epistolary communications through "The Agony Column" in the Times , identifying themselves respectively as "the strawberry man" and "the grapefruit lady," denoting their breakfast menus. He is advised that if he publishes a letter for 5 successive days, and if they are sufficiently interesting, she will meet him. He invents a murder in which Captain Fraser and his young brother, Norman, are involved and ends his series of letters by confessing to the crime himself. Marian arrives with the police and has him thrown into a dungeon from which he is rescued by anarchists. He finds her bound and gagged in a perilous situation; but he discovers that the whole affair has been staged by her to give him a taste of his own imagination.

Source: TCM

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Region 0
Nr of Disks/Tapes 1
Personal Details
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The Romance of the Strawberry Man & Lady of the Grapefruit, 24 September 2004
Author: Mike-764 (michaelnella@yahoo.com) from Flushing, NY

Geoffrey West is a vacationing American in London, who notices a young Londoner, Marion Ferguson, sitting at a table nearby and immediately falls in love. Marion, suggested by her Aunt Hattie, is put off by the Yank's glances, but it doesn't faze Geoffrey, who decides to write a personal ad in the newspaper, which Marion reads regularly at the breakfast table. Intrigued, Marion writes back asking for Geoffrey to write tales of his fabulous adventures. Geoffrey, makes up a tale based after hearing an argument from the upstairs apartment he rents, in which he is the innocent American caught in a murder mystery where he is trying to apprehend the killer before he himself is killed with suspects and international intrigue galore. Marion is excited by the letters, sent everyday of the week in a serialized format, but her Aunt Hattie leads her to believe the Geoffrey is really a murderer or spy and sends for Scotland Yard. When confronted with the letters, Geoffrey admits that it was all a joke to amuse Marion, but the joke's on him when the murdered man in the letters is actually found murdered. This was a really fun film from the early talkie period. Withers and Young interpret their roles perfectly. The movie has numerous murder mystery clichés which don't really seem corny in the context of the film. Ruth's direction lacks a clear narrative in the movie and it might put off some viewers, but its still a very humorous script. Rating, 7. (IMDB)