Inspector Hornleigh (1939)

     On March 7, 1939, Twentieth Century-Fox Film Company released the first of the Inspector Hornleigh films, Inspector Hornleigh (1939).  Inspector Hornleigh is a Scotland Yard Inspector assisted in his investigations by Sergeant Bingham.  Gordon Harker played Hornleigh, while Alastair Sim provides the comic relief as Sergeant Bingham.

     Inspector Hornleigh opens with the discovery of a murdered man in a local inn.  Hornleigh learns from the landlady that both a bag and statue are missing from the room.  Suspecting the killer wanted to sink some evidence, Hornleigh travels to a local pond, where Bingham finds the bag.  The discovery leads them to the office of the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

gordon-harker-standing-in-boat

Gordon Harker and Peggy Ashcroft being directed in a 1940 public information film Harker is standing in the boat.

     Hornleigh’s investigation ends up in the Pheasant Inn, where many political operatives hang out.  Hornleigh must find the missing government documents to avoid an international incident.

     According to the Internet Movie Database (IMDB), Gordon Harker was born in London, England on August 7, 1885.  Harker started in films in 1921 and would work in list last film in 1959, when he was in his seventies.  Harker would be involved in 73 film productions.  Harker was married to Christine Barrie until her death in 1964.  Harker passed away in 1967 at the age of 81.

     The film runs about 72 minutes depending on whether you see it on television or streaming.  Inspector Hornleigh is an average but entertaining “B” film.

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