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Submitted by Mark Fuller

The Bioscope
July 15th 1931

Two Crowded Hours (1931) 3,999 ft

Joyce is filled with alarm when she hears that Scammel, a murderer, has escaped from prison, for her evidence had led to his condemnation and the man had vowed vengeance. Her lover, Fielding, a detective, rushes to her. Their interview is interrupted by the arrival of a taxi in which the driver has found a murdered man. He asserts the corpse is not that of the man who engaged him. Fielding recognises the body to be that of a Scotland Yard detective and the crime undoubtedly Scammel's. After a series of exciting adventures at a low-class cafe and Joyce's narrow escape from strangulation, the fugitive is knocked down by the taxi and killed.

This little picture is a skilful blend of tragedy and comedy. Of the former, there is a liberal supply, the murderer engaging the taxi and arranging for the driver's brief absence from the vehicle that the body of the stabbed detective might, after an exchange of clothes, be placed therein. Subsequently there are exciting events at the cafe where the criminal takes refuge temporarily. The climax is well worked up. Fielding saving his sweetheart from the murderer's clutches and chasing him until he meets his doom, But to many the Cockney humour of the driver will make a stronger appeal; his ready wit, droll comments,and powers of repartee being certain to arouse laughter anywhere.

John Longden as the young detective, Jane Walsh as the heroine and Michael Hogan as the hunted criminal are all satisfactory. Anybody seeing Jerry Verno's driver will look forward for other impersonations.

The staging is appropriate and well photographed.

The recording is excellent.

A useful programme picture.

Selling Angle
The chain of exciting incidents and delightful study of a Cockney chauffeur by Jerry Verno.

In Brief
Sensational story of a murderer's escape from prison and attempts to destroy those who gave evidence against him. Good direction, production and setting, with considerable comedy.

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