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16 user 4 critic

They Drive by Night (1938)

A convict, just out of prison, is implicated in a murder and goes on the run, hitching a ride with a truck driver.

Director:

Arthur B. Woods

Writers:

James Curtis (novel), James Curtis (screenplay and dialogue) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview:
Emlyn Williams ... Shorty Matthews
Anna Konstam Anna Konstam ... Molly O'Neill
Allan Jeayes Allan Jeayes ... Wally Mason
Ernest Thesiger ... Walter Hoover
Jennie Hartley Jennie Hartley ... Landlady
Ronald Shiner Ronald Shiner ... Charlie
Anthony Holles Anthony Holles ... Murray
William Hartnell ... Bus Conductor (as Billy Hartnell)
Kitty de Legh Kitty de Legh ... Mrs. Mason
Joe Cunningham Joe Cunningham ... Detective Pryor
Yolande Terrell Yolande Terrell ... Marge
Julie Barrie Julie Barrie ... Pauline
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Storyline

A convict, just out of prison, is implicated in a murder and goes on the run, hitching a ride with a truck driver.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 June 1939 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Efter mörkrets inbrott See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Photophone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

 
Lost moody classic
30 April 2007 | by zebulonguySee all my reviews

They Drive By Night is an amazing British classic. It has to be one of the most sombre British films of the thirties.It is also extremely interesting as as a timepiece

The truck drivers and their local pit stops are all captured well in this slice of early British cinema. Shorty , played by Emlyn Williams in a superb performance is released from prison and sets off to see his girlfriend, he discovers her dead body in an amazingly powerful sequence. Terrified he will get the blame he goes on the run hitching a ride from a sympathetic truck driver.On the way he encounters an assortment of various characters , all diverse and entertaining. This film is wonderfully acted by all the cast. If you don't blink you will see William Hartnell who played TV's very first Dr. Who as a bus conductor.

Much later as the tone of the film completely changes from gripping thriller to downright terror he meets Ernest Thesiger who in a remarkable performance completely dominates the last 25 minutes of the film as a very eccentric chap indeed.It is a tragedy that the director Arthur B. Woods died so young, he displayed a unique talent. If you can search this film out you will be highly rewarded with a film that you will never forget.


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