Reviews

Trent's Last Case

2

If ever a movie needed Orson Welles’ presence, it was Brit-film stalwart Herbert Wilcox’s whodunnit. “Trent” is Philip Trent (Michael Wilding), dapper sleuth of EC Bentley’s novels, and the case is a death at a country pile. Sigsbee Manderson (Welles), fat-cat husband to Margaret Lockwood’s Margaret, has been bullet-holed. Trent digs deep, part driven by feelings for Mrs M. The mix of a straight dick, a secretive dame, a dead man and an ill-placed infatuation, plus a source novel also adapted by Howard Hawks in 1929, lifts expectations: a noir in drawing-room disguise? Actually, it’s more of a smoking-jacket chamber piece, in which chaps chat stiffly about who snuffed Sigsbee. Welles’ appearance in flashback – hair an oil-slick, eyebrows rollercoastering and jowls drooping like strained carrier bags – is the only real reason for catching this largely starchy theatre piece.

 

Film Details

  • U
  • UK Theatrical Release Date: January 22nd 2008