14 user 12 critic

Murder by the Clock (1931)

An elderly woman installs a horn in her crypt in case she's buried alive.


Edward Sloman


Charles Beahan (play), Rufus King (story) | 1 more credit »


Learn more

More Like This 

The 9th Guest (1934)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Eight strangers are invited to spend the night in a penthouse apartment. After being wined and dined, a voice on the radio informs them that they will be murdered unless they manage to outwit the ninth guest: Death.

Director: Roy William Neill
Stars: Donald Cook, Genevieve Tobin, Hardie Albright
Certificate: Passed Crime | Thriller | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A master criminal terrorizes the occupants of an isolated country mansion.

Director: Roland West
Stars: Chance Ward, Richard Tucker, Wilson Benge
Certificate: Passed Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Twenty years after 3 murders occur in a castle's "blue room", three men who each want to marry a beautiful girl decide to spend a night in the room to prove their bravery to her.

Director: Kurt Neumann
Stars: Lionel Atwill, Gloria Stuart, Paul Lukas
Comedy | Horror | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A party is thrown at a haunted mansion, people start to die, and a man who spent a night in the "blue room" disappears.

Director: Leslie Goodwins
Stars: Anne Gwynne, Donald Cook, John Litel
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Relatives of an eccentric millionaire gather in his spooky mansion on the 20th anniversary of his death for the reading of his will.

Director: Paul Leni
Stars: Laura La Plante, Creighton Hale, Forrest Stanley
Certificate: Passed Crime | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A monomaniacal zoologist is pathologically jealous of his beautiful but unfaithful wife Evelyn and will not stop short of murder to keep her.

Director: A. Edward Sutherland
Stars: Charles Ruggles, Lionel Atwill, Gail Patrick
Comedy | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Seeking shelter from a storm, five travelers are in for a bizarre and terrifying night when they stumble upon the Femm family estate.

Director: James Whale
Stars: Boris Karloff, Melvyn Douglas, Charles Laughton
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

The heirs to a family fortune are required to attend a seance at the spooky old family mansion. However, throughout the night members of the family are being killed off one by one.

Director: Benjamin Stoloff
Stars: Bela Lugosi, Wallace Ford, Sally Blane
Certificate: Passed Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A woman is haunted by recurring nightmares, which seem to be instigated by her late husband who supposedly was killed in a fire.

Director: William Castle
Stars: Robert Taylor, Barbara Stanwyck, Judi Meredith
Certificate: Passed Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Jenny Wren coerces banker Priam Andes to have a dinner party at his shorefront estate Crestwood, and instructs him to invite three other men, each of whom she plans to extort money from. ... See full summary »

Director: J. Walter Ruben
Stars: Ricardo Cortez, Karen Morley, Anita Louise
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Private eye Jerry Church is hired by a criminal defense lawyer after five mobsters he has gotten acquitted are apparently strangled by a serial killer.

Director: William Nigh
Stars: Patric Knowles, Lionel Atwill, Anne Gwynne
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

A mad killer is on the loose in a hotel on a dark, gloomy night.

Director: Robert F. Hill
Stars: Wallace Ford, Barbara Pepper, Joan Woodbury


Cast overview:
William 'Stage' Boyd ... Lt. Valcour (as William Boyd)
Lilyan Tashman ... Laura Endicott
Irving Pichel ... Philip Endicott
Regis Toomey ... Officer Cassidy
Sally O'Neil ... Jane, a Maid
Blanche Friderici ... Julia Endicott
Walter McGrail ... Herbert Endicott
Lester Vail ... Thomas Hollander
Martha Mattox ... Miss Roberts
Frank Sheridan ... Chief of Police
Guy Oliver ... Watchman
Frederick Sullivan ... Medical Examiner


An elderly woman installs a horn in her crypt in case she's buried alive.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Three Murders Done-But Only Two Persons Die! (Print ad-Citizen Advertiser ((Auburn N.Y.)) 29 September 1931)


Horror | Mystery


See all certifications »






Release Date:

21 July 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Crime à Hora Certa See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Roaring Hokum with a Magnificent Villainess
10 March 2017 | by richardchattenSee all my reviews

Curiously enough, none of the previous reviewers have picked up on this film's title, which has negligible bearing upon anything that actually happens; of which there is plenty. What 'Murder by the Clock' sorely lacks is decent direction, editing and a music score; what it has is a jaunty plot, a magnificent (though underused) churchyard and crypt set, atmospheric photography by Karl Struss, an entertaining cast of wierdos and weaklings. And the breathtaking Lilyan Tashman.

Blanche Friderici is Julia Endicott, matriarch of the Endicott clan, plainly nearing the end of its thinning bloodline; her only heirs being Philip (Irving Pichel), a hulking simpleton capable of breaking a man's neck with his bare hands but little else, and Herbert (Walter McGrail) a drunken weakling completely under the thumb of his gold digging wife Laura, who Julia sums up as "a malicious designing creature, ought to be hung for a witch." The late Lilyan Tashman is an absolute blast as this platinum blonde Lady Macbeth smirking evilly one minute, shedding crocodile tears the next while flirting like mad with every man in sight with a pulse ("I could be awfully fond of you"), her curvaceous, Amazonian chassis seductively on display in a clinging satin number that would probably have caused censorship problems a few years later.

The unfunny comic relief provided by Irish cop Regis Toomey and maid Sally O'Neil is rendered wholly superfluous by Tashman's rollicking performance, which gets plenty of appreciative laughs. She meets her match, however, in Lt. Valcour (William 'Stage' Boyd), who engages her in a final battle of wills, "one artist to another".

1 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 14 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed