All I want to know is, how do movie companies come up with the title for movies? Give me a break - They Drive By Night - doesn't that sound like a movie about working class truck drivers, and their adventures on the road? Nothing could be further from the plot of this intense thriller. Does it suggest a story about a demented killer? Does the name suggest that there will be dancing girls at the center of the story? Does it suggest that our killer will make the hairs on the back of our neck stand at attention when he is on the screen? I got none of this from the name of the movie, but it holds all of this and more. I dare say that this is one of the finest thrillers to ever come out of the wonderful isle of Britain - and it would have made suspense master Hitchcock jealous if he watched it and knew that he didn't make this film.
As our movie opens, small time London crook Shorty is getting out of jail. He goes back to his old neighborhood and stops at the old bar to quench his thirst and get back into the swing of things. His girlfriend is a dance hall girl - she dances with lonely strangers and collects a ticket for each dance, which she turns in at the end of the night and collects a commission. So after a drink and some chat at the bar, Shorty goes to visit his old girlfriend, and discovers her dead. Of course he is accused of her murder and goes on the run, stealing a truck and driver on the way. But soon they part, and Shorty is on a terrifying run barely one step ahead of the coppers. I really don't want to tell you much more about this plot, because I don't want to forewarn you of the chills that await you. I will tell you that I have watched a lot of movies, including most of Hitchcock's thrillers, but I have not had such real terror in my mind since I watched Hannibal Lecter on screen. Hold your white kernel popcorn close to you and keep the lights on bright, because you have no idea of what chills and thrills await you on this terrifying journey into 1938 London.
Director: Arthur B. Woods
Stars: Emlyn Williams, Anna Konstam, Allan Jeayes