The Lone Wolf Spy Hunt

The Lone Wolf Spy Hunt is a 1939 American adventure film directed by Peter Godfrey and written by Jonathan Latimer. The film stars Warren William and Ida Lupino. The film was released by Columbia Pictures on January 27, 1939.[1][2]

The Lone Wolf Spy Hunt
Theatrical release poster
Directed byPeter Godfrey
Produced byJoseph Sistrom
Screenplay byJonathan Latimer
StarringWarren William
Ida Lupino
CinematographyAllen G. Siegler
Edited byOtto Meyer
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • January 27, 1939 (1939-01-27)
Running time
71 minutes
CountryUnited States

The Lone Wolf character dates back to 1914, when author Louis Joseph Vance invented him for a series of books.[3] Warren Williams starred in a total of nine Lone Wolf films.


Michale Lanyard, the "Lone Wolf" (Warren William), is kidnapped off a Washington, D.C. street and taken to a man whose face is hidden in darkness. The mystery man offers Lanyard a job: breaking into a safe. When Lanyard declines, he is released unharmed. Afterward, a puzzled henchman named Jenks states they can open the safe without help. His boss reveals that he has "an old score to settle with the Lone Wolf".

The plans for the new Palmer anti-aircraft gun are stolen from the War Department and a cigarette deliberately left to incriminate Lanyard. However, the thieves did not get all of the plans. Palmer kept the key parts. Police Inspector Thomas knows Lanyard, one of the few capable of doing the job, is long retired and it is an obvious frameup, but is eager to seize any opportunity to try to jail him anyway. Lanyard has an alibi though; he was having lunch with blonde singer Marie Templeton.

At home, Lanyard has woman trouble. A widower, he tells his young daughter Patricia (Virginia Weidler) that he is sending her away to school, while his pretty heiress girlfriend Val Carson (Ida Lupino) is fuming because he left her at lunch to take a phone call and did not come back. Inspector Thomas and Sergeant Devan question him, then leave.

At a bar, Lanyard meets Karen (Rita Hayworth), much to Val's disgust. Lanyard accompanies Karen and is forcibly taken to Palmer Laboratories to steal the rest of the plans. He escapes, opens the safe, takes the plans from an envelope, replaces them with one for a baby carriage and reseals the envelope. Then he allows himself to be recaptured. He opens the safe and allows the spies to take the envelope. They let him go, certain that the police will arrest him.

Lanyard entrusts the documents to Senator Carson, Val's father, while he tries to clear himself. He discovers that Karen is associated with someone named Gregory (played by Ralph Morgan, but listed in the credits as "Spiro"). He crashes Gregory's masquerade party, improvising a costume and stealing an invitation from a drunk. He triggers the burglar alarm, then watches undetected as Gregory, his vengeful nemesis, opens his concealed safe to check if his share of the plans is still there. Lanyard then steals the plans, but is caught. He runs into two policemen, brought by the drunk, and escapes. When he gets home, he learns that Jenks has stolen his part of the plans from the senator.

With a tight deadline, Karen asks Lanyard to join forces with Gregory, but is rejected. Patricia sneaks into the trunk of Karen's car and is later discovered. Lanyard goes after her to Gregory's house and is captured with his half of the plans. When Val is unable to convince Thomas to accompany her to Gregory's place, she goes there alone and is easily caught. The police spot Lanyard's car at Gregory's place and arrive in time to save everyone.



Other Lone Wolf films that Warren William starred in;


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