An unusual suspense film, The Spiral Staircase tells the story of a mute servant girl threatened by a murderer who has a penchant for killing the handicapped. Ethel Barrymore, Elsa Lanchester, and George Brent co-star, while Dorothy McGuire expertly captures the dilemma of the mute Helen Capel. Capel, who has not been able to speak since childhood, must somehow call for help before becoming the killer's next victim. McGuire's performance carries the film far past any B-movie qualities in the plot, and the last line is one of the most memorable in film history. Silent movie buffs will especially enjoy the opening scene, which takes place at a turn-of-the-century movie parlor.