High up in the French Alps, the inhabitants of a small mountain village are busy preparing for Christmas. The toymaker Cornusse is occupied making presents for the children of the village, unaware that his beautiful young daughter, Catherine, is being courted by a mysterious baron. Having recently returned to the village after an absence of several years, the baron lives alone in his chateau and refuses to see anyone, until Catherine visits him out of pity. On Christmas Eve, the baron fails to keep a dinner date with Catherine, at the same time that a priceless diamond is stolen from the church. A short while later, two children from the village discover the body of Father Christmas lying dead on the snow-covered mountain slope. With the police prevented from arriving because of bad weather, the villagers attempt to resolve the mystery themselves and discover who killed Father Christmas…
Nemuri Kyoshiro 3: Engetsugiri / Sleepy Eyes of Death 3: Full Circle Killing (1964) Kimiyoshi Yasuda, Raizô Ichikawa, Kyooko Azuma, Ryônosuke Azuma, Drama, Mystery
A decapitation at the hands of the shogun’s monstrous misbegotten son kicks off the action and draws nomadic Nemuri Kyoshiro (Raizô Ichikawa) into more sword-fighting adventures when he’s blamed for the beheading. Meanwhile, the head-chopper’s mother is busy knocking off the shogun’s lawful heirs to secure the shogunate for her son.
Hurlevent / Wuthering Heights (1985) Jacques Rivette, Fabienne Babe, Lucas Belvaux, Sandra Montaigu, Drama, Romance, Mystery
Acclaimed French director Jacques Rivette’s version of Emily Bronte’s classic novel. In condensing the novel for the screen, Rivette only uses the first half of the book and the setting has been changed to rural France in the 1930s. The vengeful Heathcliff is now the vengeful Roch (Lucas Belvaux), and Cathy is the more Francophone Catherine (Fabienne Babe).
Tsuma wa kokuhaku suru / A Wife Confesses (1961) Yasuzô Masumura, Ayako Wakao, Hiroshi Kawaguchi, Eitarô Ozawa, Drama, Mystery
Un sussurro nel buio / A Whisper in the Dark (1976) Marcello Aliprandi, John Phillip Law, Nathalie Delon, Olga Bisera, Drama, Horror, Mystery
Broken Flowers (2005) Jim Jarmusch, Bill Murray, Jessica Lange, Sharon Stone, Comedy, Drama, Mystery
The resolutely single Don Johnston has just been dumped by his latest lover, Sherry. Don resigns himself to being alone yet again and left to his own devices. Instead, he is compelled to reflect on his past when he receives by mail a mysterious pink letter. It is from an anonymous former lover and informs him that he has a 19-year-old son who may now be looking for his father. Don is urged to investigate this “mystery” by his closest friend and neighbor, Winston, an amateur sleuth and family man. Hesitant to travel at all, Don nonetheless embarks on a cross-country trek in search of clues from four former flames. Unannounced visits to each of these unique women hold new surprises for Don as he haphazardly confronts both his past and, consequently, his present.
Tony Rome is an ex-cop turned private eye in Miami Beach. For $200 he returns a young woman to her father’s house after she passes out in a seedy hotel, and he keeps the hotel’s name out of it. Trouble is, she’s missing a diamond pin, and tough guys show up at Tony’s boat looking for it. When the pin does turn up, it’s fake, so the girl’s father, a wealthy builder, hires Tony to find out what happened to the real stones. Bodies pile up, Tony suspects the builder’s trophy wife, and he’s also looking for a mysterious guy named Nimmo who used to date Ann Archer, a stunning redhead Tony meets at the builder’s. Can Tony sort it out before too many die, and what about Ann?
Murder by Decree (1979) Bob Clark, Christopher Plummer, James Mason, David Hemmings, Mystery, Thriller
Bunco Squad (1950) Herbert I. Leeds, Robert Sterling, Joan Dixon, Ricardo Cortez, Crime, Drama, Mystery
Told in semi-documentary style, this film deals with a little-known section of the Los Angeles Police Department which is assigned solely to checking on the activities of fortune tellers, swamis, palmists, and other occult societies, missing only Sciencetology. The primary story has L.A. police detectives Steve Johnson and ‘Mack’ McManus tracking down a wave of suicides they think have been influenced by a swindler-murderer Anthony Wells. The latter runs a pretentious house staffed with occultists across the board, and is trying to embezzle from Jessica Royle, a wealthy widow whose son was killed in action in World War II. Johnson uses his fiancée/actress, Grace Bradshaw, as an undercover operative to get inside information.