Meet Sexton Blake (1944)

Genres - Crime, Drama, Mystery, War  |   Sub-Genres - Detective Film, Melodrama, War Drama  |   Release Date - Feb 5, 1945 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 80 min.  |   Countries - UK  |  
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The title character in Meet Sexton Blake was created in 1893 as a way of cashing in on the immense popularity of Sherlock Holmes. This 1944 film opens with a bizarre and intriguing murder. Late one night along the London waterfront, a man is desperately tugging at the hand of another man -- a corpse, the audience soon discovers. There clearly is something very important about the dead man's hand, as the living man goes so far as to take out a saw and start removing it. Soon after achieving his prize, he falls from a bridge to his own death. The body is hauled aboard a passing ship, and when they search the body they discover the grisly severed hand. Blake is soon on the scene, using his keen powers of detection to determine that the hand belonged to a photographer from another country. Blake retires to his digs, but it's not long before a new client appears at his door. By coincidence, this man -- an arms manufacturer -- wants Blake to investigate the death of a friend, who just happens to have been a foreign photographer. Blake and his assistant Tinker delve into the case, which leads them to a mysterious villain named Slant Eyes and an espionage plot involving a new alloy for use in airplanes that is of enormous value to both sides in the war.

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Keywords

war, aerial, clue, corpse, detective, element, espionage, fighter, formula, invasion, investigation, investigator, killing, manufacturer, metal, photography, plans, privacy, private-detective, ring [jewelry], secrets, villain, man