The Cinema Murder

Cover image for


Author: E. Phillips Oppenheim (Anthony Partridge)
Published: 1917
Language: English
Wordcount: 75,628 / 221 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 75.3
LoC Category: PR
Downloads: 5,099 7800

Philip Romilly is a young art student, half starved, both mentally and physically and without prospect. His cousin, Douglas, has everything and even buys beatrice, Philip's fiancée. The two cousins meet under an English railroad bridge and Philip emerges alone. A day or two later he sails for America, under the name Douglas Romilly and wearing his cousin's clothes. Philip's career in New York is filled with incident. On his wedding day he is arrested for the murder of his cousin, and he seems lost, but the unexpected happens to save the situation.(Title in England: The Other Romilly.)

Show Excerpt

s conscious of an unexpected weakness. She abandoned her first intention of following him, and stood before the window, holding tightly to the sash. He had reached the gate now and paused for a moment, looking up the long, windy street. Then he crossed to the other side of the road, stepped over a stile and disappeared, walking without haste, with firm footsteps, along a cindered path which bordered the sluggish-looking canal. He had come and gone, and she knew what fear was!


The railway station at Detton Magna presented, if possible, an even more dreary appearance than earlier in the day, as the time drew near that night for the departure of the last train northwards. Its long strip of flinty platform was utterly deserted. Around the three flickering gas-lamps the drizzling rain fell continuously. The weary porter came yawning out of his lamp room into the booking office, where the station master sat alone, his chair turned away from the open wicket wind


Average Rating of 3.7 from 6 reviews: ****
Dai Alanye

I'm becoming quite put out with Oppenheim. This story makes a promising start, having a deeply-flawed but sympathetic hero, and an attractive if unbelievably angelic heroine.

Goes downhill as the hero begins to make it a habit to blab about his crime at the drop of a hat, while showing a naive conviction in his own safety from the law. Not to worry, however, as he manages to bring out the mother instinct in all women, and they'll protect him. More than that, his enemy turns into a forgiving Christian gentleman for almost no reason at all.


I liked this novel a lot. It does get wordy at times, but I always wanted to keep reading. It's a non-traditional mystery - not a whodunit. The romance is enjoyable without being too heavy, and the characters are well crafted. A good, light read!


Apart from the most tenuous link, this has little to do with the cinema! What it does have is intrigue aplenty, great characters, glamorous settings and an unexpected twist.

Quite why E. Phillips Oppenheim is largely overlooked today is unclear. This is the third of his books I have read and they have all been superb.


Worth reading just for that unexpected ending!


Satisfying mystery, slightly dated but the descriptions of America of the period are fascinating to the modern reader; little bit plodding, but persevere, the twist at the end is good stuff, and watching Philip's character develop is enjoyable.


I enjoyed this novel although at times it seemed a bit wordy. A bit dated but I liked the twist at the end. One thing about it, there is usually no profanity in stories of this vintage. This is refreshing in view of the penchant for including it in more recent works.

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