Lady on a Train

Overview

Deanna Durbin offered her fans a change of pace in this mystery story seasoned with elements of comedy and music. Nikki Collins Durbin is a small-town girl visiting New York City to meet with Mr. Haskell Edward Everett Horton, her family's attorney. As her train pulls into the station, she looks out her window into a nearby office building. She's shocked by what she sees -- a man is being strangled to death, and while she can't see the face of the killer, she gets a good look at the victim. Terrified, Nikki ...
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Universal Studios Ho, 10/31/2000, VHS Tape, Like New condition. VHS Tape. Case Very Good. Quality guaranteed! In original artwork/packaging unless otherwise noted.

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Overview

Deanna Durbin offered her fans a change of pace in this mystery story seasoned with elements of comedy and music. Nikki Collins Durbin is a small-town girl visiting New York City to meet with Mr. Haskell Edward Everett Horton, her family's attorney. As her train pulls into the station, she looks out her window into a nearby office building. She's shocked by what she sees -- a man is being strangled to death, and while she can't see the face of the killer, she gets a good look at the victim. Terrified, Nikki immediately goes to the police, but they think that her story is simply the product of an overactive imagination and send her on her way. Nikki, however, is certain that she witnessed a murder, and she approaches mystery writer Wayne Morgan David Bruce to help her piece together the facts of what happened. Thanks to a newsreel, Nikki is able to recognize the victim as Mr. Waring, a wealthy man who made his fortune in shipping; she attempts to contact Waring's family, but they're convinced that Nikki is a nightclub singer with whom the tycoon was having an affair. Hoping to contact the chanteuse in question, Nikki visits the club where she works, only to discover that she's also been murdered. Nikki soon finds herself being trailed by both Jonathan Ralph Bellamy and Arnold Dan Duryea, two members of Waring's family whom she believes may have been involved in the crime, and could be trying to silence her once and for all. Like most of Durbin's vehicles, Lady on a Train's plot stops every now and then to give her the opportunity to sing a song; Western fans may want to keep an eye peeled for future cowboy star Lash LaRue, who has a small role as a waiter.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Lady on a Train is an uncomfortable ménage a trois between screwball comedy, murder mystery, and musical. By trying to be all three things, it ends up satisfying as none. Fans of star Deanna Durbin will probably like it more than others, as it gives the singer a chance to show off those formidable pipes on three occasions, and indeed these moments are the finest in the film. This is especially true of her "Silent Night," which is quite lovely. Unfortunately, it doesn't belong in this film; it's a nice side trip, but it just ends up making the journey that much longer. When she's not singing in Train, Durbin is a little at sea. Director Charles David doesn't protect his star, doesn't give her the guidance she needs to overcome the very lame material she is given. As a result, Durbin doesn't sparkle, which affects the film as a whole. David's direction overall is poor, unable to do anything with the warring genres or to make the leaden dialogue come to life. The plotting is convoluted and unconvincing, and there are some stereotypes that will be offensive to modern viewers. The supporting cast is decent, but Train is not a ride worth taking.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/27/1996
  • UPC: 096898197335
  • Original Release: 1945
  • Rating:

  • Source: Universal Studios
  • Presentation: Black & White
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Deanna Durbin Nikki Collins
Ralph Bellamy Jonathan Waring
Edward Everett Horton Mr. Haskell
Dan Duryea Arnold Waring
George Coulouris Mr. Saunders
Allen Jenkins Danny
David Bruce Wayne Morgan
Patricia Morison Joyce Williams
Maria Palmer Margo Martin
Elizabeth Patterson Aunt Charlotte
Samuel S. Hinds Mr. Wiggam
William Frawley Sgt. Christie, Police Captain
Jacqueline De Wit Miss Fletcher
Thurston Hall Josiah Waring
Ben Carter Maxwell
Mary Forbes Cousin
Sarah Edwards Cousin
Nora Cecil Woman with Umbrella
Hobart Cavanaugh Drunk
Eddie Acuff New York Cab Driver
Jane Adams
Ernest Anderson Doorman
Barbara Bates Hatcheck Girl
Eddie Bruce
Charles Cane New York Policeman
George Chandler Customer
André Charlot Man with Carnation
Chester Clute Conductor
Joseph Crehan Mr. Smith
Robert Dudley Honeywell
Tom Dugan Turnkey
Eddie Dunn Clerk
Al Ferguson Workman
Clyde Fillmore Cousin
Alice Fleming Mrs. Brown
Mabel Forrest Wife
Ethel May Halls Haughty Woman
Dick Hirbe Newsboy
George Lewis
George Lloyd
Sam McDaniel
Matt McHugh Drunk
Bert Moorhouse Reporter
Jack Norton Santa Claus
Kathleen O'Malley Photographer
Ralph Peters Taxi Driver
Karen Randle Cigarette Girl
Addison Richards Captain
Bert Roach Fat Man
Charles Sherlock
Jean Trent
Eddy Waller Mr. Brown
Charles Deschamps Hairdresser
Eddie Bartell Sound Track
Lash LaRue Waiter
Technical Credits
Charles David Director
Edmund Beloin Screenwriter
Elwood Bredell Cinematographer
Robert Clatworthy Art Director
John P. Fulton Special Effects
Russell A. Gausman Set Decoration/Design
John B. Goodman Art Director
Howard Greer Costumes/Costume Designer
Felix Jackson Producer
Ted Kent Editor
Robert O'Brien Screenwriter
Miklós Rózsa Score Composer
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