In a small, quiet Oklahoma community, Prince Alihabad courts young Margaret Wilson. After a mysterious man burglarizes the house and murders Margaret's father, detectives scramble to solve the crime.
2015.167.14.1ab: 16mm black and white films.
Mr. Wilson, a Texas landowner rich with oil, is murdered. Two young family friends set out to uncover the murderer. They journey to Shreveport where the crime is solved.
Over her mother Emma's objections, Margaret Wilson, an impressionable small-town beauty, encourages the romantic interests of the refined Prince Alihabad and rejects her longtime admirer, the sincere but poor Buster Barnett. Unknown to Margaret, Alihabad is a charlatan from the vaudeville circuit, whose interest in the East Texas oil field that her father Dan has set aside for her wedding present appears to be more than passing. After Dan shows him where the oil land deed is kept, Alihabad asks Margaret to leave with him on an extended overseas trip. While Margaret debates and finally rejects Alihabad's dubious invitation, a man watches her house. Later the man breaks into the Wilsons' home and, after drugging Emma and Dan, steals the deed. Margaret discovers her father dead the next morning and telephones Ernest Lingley, whose bumbling son Jr. is an aspiring private detective. While Jr. and his equally ineffectual partner, Lightfoot, rush to the crime scene, homicide detective Sergeant Ramsey questions Buster, who casts suspicion on Alihabad. Ramsey, who has learned that Dan had contacted an oil developer in Shreveport, Louisiana, about his land, orders his men to locate Alihabad, Jr. and Lightfoot take off for Shreveport. There they inform John Mason, the oil company agent, to expect a man to approach him with the Wilson deed. Mason notifies the local police, while Jr. and Lightfoot cover the train depot. Later that night, the killer shows up at Mason's office, presents the stolen deed, then demands cash for it at knifepoint. At the same time, Jr. and Lightfoot, having spent the day in fruitless pursuit, return to Mason's office just in time to alert the police and apprehend the killer. The mystery of Dan's death solved, Ramsey then corners Alihabad, who reveals his fakery and loses Margaret to the deserving, faithful Buster.
AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Accessed August 11, 2016 (http://www.afi.com/members/catalog/DetailView.aspx?s=&Movie=2243)
WorldCat. Accessed August 11, 2016 (https://www.worldcat.org/title/midnight-shadow/oclc/15160578&referer=brief_results)