Starring: John Howard, Reginald Denny, E.E. Clive, Heather Angel, H.B. Warner, and George Zucco
Director: James Hogan
Rating: Six of Ten Stars
Hugh Drummond (Howard) ends up a murder suspect when an international freelance spy (Zucco) kills an inventor and steals an experimental beam-weapon that remotely detonates gunpowder and explosives. With his wedding plans yet again disrupted, Drummond, his best friend Algy (Denny), his ever-resourceful gentleman's gentleman Tenny (Clive), and his fiance Phyllis (Angel) travel to a tropical island to capture the spy and return the deadly weapon to British hands.
"Arrest Bulldog Drummond" starts sluggishly, has a darker tone than the other entries in the Paramount-produced "Bulldog Drummond" series, and what gags that are present are rather tepid. The film is saved by a strong third act, the usual excellent performances by Howard, Denny, Clive, and Angel (with Denny and Angel getting quite a bit of screen-time, and their characters of Algy and Phyllis taking more active roles in the plot than usual), and a nifty turn by George Zucco as the sinister spy Rolf Alferson. Unfortunately, Colonel Nielsen (Warner) is once again reduced to a blithering idiot by the writers (something which seems to be a hallmark of the worst installments in the series.)
With a near equal amount of good parts and bad parts, "Arrest Bulldog Drummond" is one of the weakest entries in the series, with the strong finish and good performances by Zucco and the regular cast members barely managing to elevate the film to the upper-end of average. It's okay, but you won't miss much if you skip it.