Starring William Gargan, Margaret Lindsay, Charley Grapewin, Ralph Morgan, Kay Linaker,
Andrew Tombes, Charles Lane
Directed by James P. Hogan
Runtime: 67 min.
Print Quality: B
William Gargan takes over from Ralph Bellamy as the title character in Columbia's A Close
Call for Ellery Queen. Unlike Bellamy, who played the role of Ellery Queen for laughs, Gargan
adopts a more sober approach, much to the overall benefit of the film. The story takes place
at the lavish country estate owned by wealthy Alan Rogers (Ralph Morgan). Two young
ladies show up at Rogers' doorstep, both claiming to be his long-lost daughter.
Concurrently, a pair of unsavory gentlemen (Andrew Tombes, Charles Judels) from Rogers'
checkered past arrive with blackmail on their minds. Ellery tries to make heads or tails of all
this intrigue before Rogers ends up losing his fortune, aided by his "girl Friday" Nikki Porter
(Margaret Lindsay)-but our hero is unable to prevent a pair of nasty murders.