After the death of her father, Jean Hampton (Frances Rafferty) became the ward of Phillip Treadway (Ray Collins).  Phillip also manages the estates of Jean’s Uncles Rodney and Arthur Hampton (Clyde Fillmore and Raymond Largay).  Jean is engaged to Barry Gifford (Paul Langton).  They have been only dating a couple months and Barry is the son of Arthur’s former partner.  There have been some deaths in the family lately and Arthur and Rodney are concerned about the appearance of impropriety if Jean and Barry marry too soon after their deaths. 

Barry and Jean make an appointment to visit Uncle Rodney to discuss their marriage plans.  Barry arrives first and finds Rodney dead.  The police are called, and Inspector Delaney (Thomas E. Jackson) starts an investigation.  His main suspect is Barry. 

Captain Duncan ‘Mac’ Maclain (Edward Arnold) is a blind private detective.  He accomplishes this feat with the help of his assistant, Marty Corbett (William ‘Bill’ Phillips), his chauffeur, Gibbs (Theodore Newton), and his trusty seeing-eye dog, Friday (Friday).  Jean visits Mac looking for help in discovering who the murderer is.  Not long after that Jean’s Uncle Arthur is the next to be murdered.  Mac does some digging and believes that Barry is being framed.  He knows who is responsible for the murders but finding evidence may be a problem.  When Mac’s Seeing Eye dog Friday is dognapped, Mac must walk into a trap to try to free his companion and bring down a murderer. 

“The Hidden Eye” was released in 1945 and was directed by Richard Whorf.  It is an American murder thriller and is a sequel to the 1942 film “Eyes in the Night”.

The Duncan Maclain character was created by Baynard Kendrick.  Kendrick wrote fourteen novels using the blind detective as the protagonist.  The film uses Kendrick’s characters, but the story was written by George Harman.  MGM had planned on doing an entire series of Mac Maclain films but the poor showing of the sequel convinced MGM to abandon the idea.

I actually liked both this and the prequel, however, in the prequel Friday got to do some really awesome stuff.  Here he ends up a victim at one point and instead of saving Mac he has to be rescued himself.  I also liked the character that Edward Arnold plays.  Mac is a cheerful man who laughs easily and spouts wonderful pearls of wisdom.  Just don’t cross him.  The movie had a couple misleading clues, but you know early on who the killer is, so I suspect they were meant to either confuse the police or frame Barry.  The film was very enjoyable, perhaps not as good as the prequel but still interesting enough if you are looking for a regular who-done-it movie.     

Phillip Treadway is played by Ray Collins.  Collins may be best known for playing the tenacious homicide detective Lt. Arthur Tragg in the Perry Mason television series.  

At one point a small black terrier garners Friday’s attention just before a truck tries to run down the blind detective.  The black terrier was Terry, the same dog that played Toto in “The Wizard of Oz” 1939, as well as almost two dozen other films.

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