Watch Calling Paul Temple
- 1 hr 28 min
Calling Paul Temple is a 1948 film adaptation of the popular British radio detective series of the same name. The film follows the titular character, Paul Temple (John Bentley), a suave detective who is called upon to solve a string of murders that revolve around a wealthy businessman and his family. Along the way, Temple is aided by his trusty wife, Steve (Dinah Sheridan), and a cast of eccentric characters.
The film begins with a prologue that introduces us to the victims of the killer known only as "The Marquis." From there, we are introduced to the Temple couple, who are enjoying a quiet vacation in France. However, their trip is interrupted by a frantic call from a friend of Paul's, Sir Graham Forbes (Charles Victor), who asks the detective to help him solve the case of a missing diamond. This is the start of a mystery that will take Temple and his wife across Europe and back.
As the investigation unfolds, we are introduced to a cast of interesting characters, including the business tycoon Edward Bentley (Abraham Sofaer), his wife Lady Bentley (Margaretta Scott), and their daughter Betty (Patricia Burke). It soon becomes clear that the Bentleys are at the center of the mystery, and that the killer is targeting members of their family.
Paul Temple proves to be a master detective, using his intelligence and wit to follow the trail of clues and narrow down the list of suspects. Along the way, he is aided by a number of eccentric characters, including the eccentric artist Felix de Rohan (Alan Wheatley), the would-be actress Zita (Joy Shelton), and a young boy named Bobby (Geoffrey Sumner).
One of the things that sets Calling Paul Temple apart from other detective movies of its time is its focus on the characters. While the mystery at the heart of the film is certainly compelling, it is the relationships between the characters that keep us engaged. John Bentley's Paul Temple is a charming and intelligent protagonist, and his interactions with his wife Steve add a layer of warmth to the film. Dinah Sheridan's performance as Steve is also noteworthy, as she takes on a more active role in the investigation as the movie progresses.
Another standout element of the film is its sense of style. The film is set in the glamorous world of wealthy businesspeople and international travel, and director Maclean Rogers takes full advantage of this to create a visually striking movie. The film's use of shadows and light help to create a sense of tension and danger, while the elegant costumes and set dressing help to transport us back to the post-war era in which the film was made.
In terms of plot, Calling Paul Temple is a tightly constructed mystery with plenty of twists and turns to keep the audience engaged. While the film keeps its cards close to its chest for much of the runtime, the payoff in the final act is satisfying and unexpected. The film also does a good job of balancing its more serious moments with moments of humor, thanks in large part to the eccentric supporting characters.
Overall, Calling Paul Temple is a well-made detective movie that should appeal to fans of the genre. Its stylish visuals, compelling characters, and engaging plot make it a standout film from the era. While it may not be as well-known as some of the other detective movies from the 1940s, it is certainly worth seeking out for fans of classic cinema.
Calling Paul Temple is a 1948 mystery with a runtime of 1 hour and 28 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 5.9.