Best Mystery Movies of 1953
House of Wax
A New York sculptor who opens a wax museum to showcase the likenesses of famous historical figures runs into trouble with his business partner, who demands that the exhibits become more extreme in order to increase profits.
The Blue Gardenia
Deeply distraught that her GI ex-boyfriend plans to marry another woman, Norah Larkin agrees to go out on a date with lothario Harry Prebble. Norah's drunken night out with Prebble ends in a hazily remembered confrontation and the next day a startling discovery: Harry has been murdered, and the police have found Norah's personal effects at the scene. Tipped off to the breaking news, reporter Casey Mayo invites Norah to tell her side of the story.
A young bride is set to begin her honeymoon aboard a luxury liner. Her happiness does not last when she finds that her husband has disappeared. Trouble is, no one else ever saw him board the ship with her and his name has mysteriously dropped from the passenger list.
A Blueprint for Murder
Whitney Cameron is in a quandary: he's attracted to his beautiful sister-in-law, Lynn, but also harbors serious suspicions about her. Her husband, Cameron's brother, died under mysterious circumstances, and now that the death of her stepchild, Polly, has been attributed to poisoning, he suspects that Lynn is after his late brother's estate, and killing everyone in her way.
A supermodel gets murdered. While investigating the case the story of a waitress turned glamor girl is revealed.
The House of the Arrow
A London solicitor and a French detective investigate the mysterious death of an elderly woman suspected of being poisoned.
Remains to Be Seen
A singer and her apartment manager get mixed up in a creepy Park Avenue murder and find themselves facing danger at every turn.
Los Angeles, 1953. The author David L. "Dave" Brady wants to bring a missed ex-newspaperman back to Los Angeles. Therefore Dave has to travel to Mexico City. Dave gets involved with a murder case that occurred fifteen years ago. It's an obsession for Dave to solve that murder.
The Large Rope
After being framed for a murder he didn't commit, Tom Penney (Donald Houston) serves his time and returns to his rural English home to establish a quiet life. When another victim is found, however, Tom is blamed for the crime and flees rather than returnng to prison. Hoping to find the real killer -- or killers -- Tom investigates while keeping a low profile to elude his pursuers, and a vital clue leads him on the path to possible redemption.
A young woman is hired to take care of an eerie old mansion, where she finds herself entangled with an enigmatic murderer.
Girl on the Run
A hootchy-kootchy whodunit set at a small seedy carnival where a reporter tries to discover who killed his boss while his girlfriend inexplicably joins the burlesque show!
A Psycho stalks the streets of Greenwich Village, killing and cutting off their hair!
I, the Jury
Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer in his first film adventure. Originally screened in 3D.
Caught in a loveless marriage, Dr. John Winnington (Ronald Howard) can't stop himself from falling for his wife's (Mary Laura Wood) younger sister, Christine (Olga Edwardes). But when he suddenly becomes the prime suspect in his wife's tragic murder, John relies on his friend Eric (John Bentley) to clear his name. This classic murder mystery encourages viewers to evaluate all of the clues and guess the killer's identity.
Death Goes to School
Detective Inspector Campbell (Gordon Jackson) looks into the murder of a teacher at a girls school where there are a number of suspects, including her colleagues and the married man she had been seeing.
The Saint's Return
A private detective goes after the people who murdered his girlfriend.
Murder at 3am
A police detective suspects that his sister's boyfriend is a murderer.
A medical student (Ross Elliott) learns about a scheme to drug a girl (Susan Morrow) and pass her off as an heiress to an oil fortune.
Tales of Tomorrow: The Evil Within
A scientist perfects a chemical, unleashing the beast within, but before he can create an antidote, his neglected wife is accidentally dosed when he has to rush a batch home to keep it refrigerated. Her mild resentment of his endless hours at the lab accelerates into a torrent, after she gobbles pie on which the potion dripped.
Nostradamus and the Queen
An elderly Catherine de Medici reflects back on how the prophecies of Nostradamus accurately predicted the fates of her husband, her three sons and herself.
Steve Gordon, an American agent posing as a black market operator, is in Tangier on a mission to stop the plans of three atomic-scientists who are there to pool their secrets and sell them in a package to the Communists.
Man in the Attic
London, 1888: on the night of the third Jack the Ripper killing, soft-spoken Mr. Slade, a research pathologist, takes lodgings with the Harleys, including a gloomy attic room for "experiments." Mrs. Harley finds Slade odd and increasingly suspects the worst; her niece Lily (star of a decidedly Parisian stage revue) finds him interesting and increasingly attractive. Is Lily in danger, or are her mother's suspicions merely a red herring?
A jealous musician kills his wife and frames a cab driver.
Magic Trick is a short film made in 1953 by Orson Welles, for use in a show by magician Richard Himber. It involves Welles on-screen interacting with Himber off-screen as the two play a card trick, and would have been projected life-size (in black and white) during Himber's touring stage show in the 1950s.
The Body Beautiful
Susan Morrow, the secretary to Robert Clarke, a model photographer, is upset when her boss pays too much attention to model Noreen Nash. Morrow's younger sister takes a candid photo of her sister in her underwear, with face hidden, and sends it to Clarke. He is intrigued and tries to locate the mystery girl but, meanwhile, enters the photograph in a contest. It wins, provided Clarke can identify the girl. He offers a reward and hires a friend to search for her. Meanwhile, back the agency, Nash offers to pose as the missing girl, but she and Clarke quarrel and she walks out. Rather than leave her boss in a fix, Morrow admits she is the girl in the picture.