6.4/10
41
1 user 2 critic

Beware Spooks! (1939)

Passed | | Comedy | 24 October 1939 (USA)
A bumbling detective chases an escaped convict in an amusement park haunted house.

Director:

Edward Sedgwick

Writers:

Richard Flournoy (play), Richard Flournoy (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Alexander Botts is a self-described natural born salesman and master mechanic, who is trying to make a big sale of Earthworm tractors to grouchy lumberman Johnson. Since Botts doesn't ... See full summary »

Director: Ray Enright
Stars: Joe E. Brown, June Travis, Guy Kibbee
Alibi Ike (1935)
Comedy | Romance | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Idiosyncratic new recruit Francis "Ike" Farrell tries to help the Cubs to the pennant with his pitching and hitting.

Director: Ray Enright
Stars: Joe E. Brown, Olivia de Havilland, Ruth Donnelly
Comedy | Romance | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Country bumpkin Elmer Kane joins the Chicago Cubs as the greatest hitter in baseball. His skill with a bat takes the team to the World Series, but on the way to the championship he has to deal with gamblers and crooked pitchers.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Joe E. Brown, Patricia Ellis, Frank McHugh
Comedy | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A show-biz couple inherit a college on the brink of bankruptcy. In a bid to increase funding they attempt to build up the college football team by offering $1,000 for every touchdown scored.

Director: James P. Hogan
Stars: Joe E. Brown, Martha Raye, Eric Blore
Jesse James (1939)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

After railroad agents forcibly evict the James family from their family farm, Jesse and Frank turn to banditry for revenge.

Directors: Henry King, Irving Cummings
Stars: Tyrone Power, Henry Fonda, Nancy Kelly
Dark Victory (1939)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A young socialite is diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor, and must decide whether or not she'll meet her final days with dignity.

Director: Edmund Goulding
Stars: Bette Davis, George Brent, Humphrey Bogart
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A naive man is appointed to fill a vacancy in the United States Senate. His plans promptly collide with political corruption, but he doesn't back down.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: James Stewart, Jean Arthur, Claude Rains
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Joe E. Brown ... Roy L. Gifford
Mary Carlisle ... Betty Lou Winters Gifford
Clarence Kolb ... Commissioner Lester Lewis
Marc Lawrence ... Slick Eastman
Don Beddoe ... Nick Bruno
George J. Lewis ... Danny Emmett
Edit

Storyline

Roy Gifford, a police officer, fumbles the capture of a bank robber and wanted killer and is assigned a patrol in the city boondocks. There, he manages to, under strange circumstances, his honeymoon, and in a strange place, a carnival spook house, accidentally captures the gang that got away. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

based on play | See All (1) »

Taglines:

What Is He... MAN or MOUTH?

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 October 1939 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

La casa de los sustos See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Frivilous little comedy.
15 September 2002 | by mark.waltzSee all my reviews

Don't let the title fool you; This is not a comedy in the tradition of "The Ghost Breakers" or "Hold That Ghost"; It is the story of a bumbling cop out to improve his reputation by finding a payroll robber he accidently let get away. Joe E. Brown, best known to today's audiences as Captain Andy in the 1951 revival of "Show Boat" and as the suave millionaire who provides the punchline at the end of "Some Like It Hot", plays the less-than-capable police officer who has been transfered so many times that there is nowhere else to send him. Determined to restore his reputation, Brown and his young wife, Mary Carlisle, begin investigating on their own, and trace the crooks to an amusement park where there is a slapstick finale inside a fun house.

By the late 1930's, film comics popular in the early days of talkies were starting to run out of steam, and Brown was one of them. He had made several dozen low-budget comedys for Warner Brothers in the early-mid 30's, and by this time, was reduced to even lower-budgeted comedys at studios such as RKO and Columbia (where this came from). They were more likely to be seen on the lower half of a double bill and thus get lower attention than the slapstick films then being made by such "newer" folks as Bob Hope and The Ritz Brothers. By the time of the arrival of Abbott and Costello the following year, comics such as Brown swung down the ladder even further, Brown reduced to working at Republic.

"Beware Spooks!" is entertaining thanks to its short running time and fast paced slapstick action. Brown does his best to enliven the show which goes into full-force two-reeler like speed at the end when the crook (Marc Lawrence) and Brown go head-to-head in a fun house. The comedy which comes before that is dull in comparrison, but there are moments within the finale which are masterpieces of slapstick comedy. Mary Carlisle, one of those non-descript leading ladies of the 30's, is secondary, and it is understandable why she is basically forgotten today. She was given these types of parts based upon beauty alone, which didn't require much skill other than to look worried or pretty. Clarence Kolb, as the boss, is an entertaining character actor, and does his best to make his part of the buffoon boss interesting.


12 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See one user review »

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 Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed