Alpha Video

Last Alarm

A maniacal pyromaniac holds the city in a grip of terror.
Rating 3.8
7 ratings
Movie on IMDb
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Item:  ALP 4738D
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DVD Features:

  • Rated: Not Rated
  • Run Time: 54 minutes
  • Video: Black & White
  • Released:
  • Originally Released: 1940
  • Label: Alpha Video
  • Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
  • Packaging: Keep Case
  • Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33

Performers, Cast and Crew:

Starring , &
Performer: , &
Directed by

Description by OLDIES.com:

A serial arsonist is on the loose and the authorities are all but helpless in the face of his fiery rampage. Retired firefighter Jim Hadley, outraged by the death of his best friend in one of the arsonist's fires, offers to help catch the maniac before anyone else gets hurt.

Movies about pyromaniacs are a fairly common staple for the action market, but The Last Alarm is the only one we've found whose firebug worships Vulcan and starts conflagrations as sacrifices to that ancient Roman god of flame. As portrayed by George Pembroke, the arsonist keeps a statuette of Vulcan at hand and laughs with mordant glee as he peers through pop-bottle eyeglasses at each new atrocity.

J. Farrell MacDonald should have obtained a patent on his role as the heroic old-timer, which he also played as a policeman, a railroad engineer, a tramp, a frontier sheriff, a factory bull-of-the-woods and a sea captain. Here he is as expert as ever - one of the dependables. Mary Gordon, soon to become the perennial Mrs. Hudson to Basil Rathbone's Sherlock Holmes, and Polly Ann Young offer good support as MacDonald's family. Warren Hull, who later portrayed the Spider, Mandrake the Magician and the Green Hornet so ably for the serial fans, is here as the juvenile lead. As for Pembroke, he lays it on thick, which is precisely what the part wants.

Product Description:

Captain Hadley (J. Farrell MacDonald) is forced into retirement from the firefighting team when he reaches a certain age, and he is both bored by civilian life and distraught over the recent death of his friend Burt (Joel Friedkin), who died while fighting a fire. When an arsonist begins wreaking havoc on the community, Hadley takes matters into his own hands, joining forces with an insurance investigator to track down the culprit. But the closer he gets, the more he realizes that he is the next intended victim.

Plot Keywords:

Mystery | Suspense | Thriller

Movie Lovers' Ratings & Reviews:

Customer Rating: Rating 3.8
Based on 7 ratings.
Write an online review to share your thoughts with other customers.
Rating 3.5 Hot stuff Movie Lover: from Middle Village, NY US -- February, 3, 2009

The pyromaniac - played by George Pembroke - with his beedy eyes behing milk bottle glasses is a perfectly evil character. Watching him in action, to me, is the high point of the film.


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Product Info:

  • Sales Rank: 8,280
  • UPC: 089218473899
  • Shipping Weight: 0.27/lbs (approx)
  • International Shipping: 1 item

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Film Collectors & Archivists: Alpha Video is actively looking for rare and unusual pre-1943 motion pictures, in good condition, from Monogram, PRC, Tiffany, Chesterfield, and other independent studios for release on DVD. We are also interested in TV shows from the early 1950s. Share your passion for films with a large audience. Let us know what you have.