The House of the Arrow (1940 film)

The House of the Arrow is a 1940 British mystery film directed by Harold French and starring Kenneth Kent, Diana Churchill and Belle Chrystall.[1] It was made at Elstree Studios.[2] The film is an adaptation of A.E.W. Mason's 1924 novel The House of the Arrow featuring the French detective Inspector Hanaud. It was released in the U.S. by PRC as Castle of Crimes. [3]

The House of the Arrow
U.S. theatrical poster
Directed byHarold French
Produced byWalter C. Mycroft
Written byA.E.W. Mason (novel)
Doreen Montgomery
StarringKenneth Kent
Diana Churchill
Belle Chrystall
Peter Murray-Hill
Music byHarry Acres
CinematographyWalter J. Harvey
Edited byEdward B. Jarvis
Distributed byABPC
Release date
26 October 1940
Running time
66 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom


Critical reception

In a contemporary review, Variety lamented, "an uninteresting whodunit geared for the duals," and criticised the film for being too wordy, saying, "it's hard for American audiences to understand much of the dialog because of the accents. Acting is stilted, though Kenneth Kent, as a police inspector, gives a fairly strong performance," the reviewer concluding that "Dreary lighting impedes much of the values";[4] while more recently, TV Guide also criticised the film's "low production values," and regretted, "Too bad there's no suspense or intrigue in this stock whodunit."[5]


  2. Wood p.100
  3. "Castle of Crimes (1940) - Harold French - Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related - AllMovie". AllMovie.
  4. Variety (13 September 2017). "Variety (April 1945)". New York, NY: Variety Publishing Company via Internet Archive.
  5. "Castle Of Crimes".


  • Wood, Linda. British Films, 1927–1939. British Film Institute, 1986.
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