No Trace
Directed byJohn Gilling
Written by
Produced by
CinematographyMonty Berman
Edited byGerald Landau
Music byJohn Lanchbery
Distributed byEros Films (UK)
Release date
  • 8 September 1950 (1950-09-08) (UK)
Running time
76 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

No Trace is a 1950 British second feature[1] crime film directed by John Gilling and starring Hugh Sinclair, Dinah Sheridan and John Laurie.[2] A crime writer murders a blackmailer, and is then asked to help solve the case by the police.[3]


Crime novelist Robert Southley murders the man who has been blackmailing him. The police ask him to help with the investigation. When he writes a novel based on the murder, his secretary Linda discovers his guilt. Southley is about to murder Linda but the police rescue her in time.



The working title of the film was Murder by the Book.[4] It was made at Twickenham Studios and on location in London and Buckinghamshire.[5]

Critical reception

Monthly Film Bulletin said "Competent acting does not compensate for weakmesses in plot construction."[6]

TV Guide wrote "Though a tightly controlled, well-paced thriller, there are few surprises; the characterizations are well played, and the direction shows a good feel for excitement".[7]

DVD Talk noted "Not a bad film as much as it is merely diverting."[8]

In British Sound Films: The Studio Years 1928–1959 David Quinlan rated the film as "average", writing: "Unlikely, but competently-done thriller."[9]

Chibnall and McFarlane in The British 'B' Film describe the film as a "proficient entertainment."[1]

The Radio Times Guide to Films gave the film 3/5 stars, writing: "This is a better than-average 'quota quickie' from John Gilling, in which crime writer Hugh Sinclair tries to cover his tracks (and delude snooping cop John Laurie) after he kills a blackmailer from his gangland past. As we know from the outset that he won't get away with it, the fun lies in watching him make the slips that give him away to secretary Dinah Sheridan and her admirer Barry Morse."[10]


  1. ^ a b Chibnall, Steve; McFarlane, Brian (2009). The British 'B' Film. London: BFI/Bloomsbury. p. 84. ISBN 978-1-8445-7319-6.
  2. ^ "No Trace". British Film Institute Collections Search. Retrieved 8 November 2023.
  3. ^ "No Trace (1950) - John Gilling | Synopsis, Characteristics, Moods, Themes and Related | AllMovie" – via
  4. ^ "No Trace (1950)". BFI. Archived from the original on 30 October 2020.
  5. ^ "Reelstreets | No Trace".
  6. ^ "No Trace". Monthly Film Bulletin. 17 (193): 156. 1950 – via ProQuest.
  7. ^ "No Trace | TV Guide".
  8. ^ "British Cinema: Renown Pictures Crime & Noir (Blackout, Bond of Fear, Home To Danger, Meet Mr. Callaghan, No Trace, Recoil)". DVD Talk.
  9. ^ Quinlan, David (1984). British Sound Films: The Studio Years 1928–1959. London: B.T. Batsford Ltd. p. 355. ISBN 0-7134-1874-5.
  10. ^ Radio Times Guide to Films (18th ed.). London: Immediate Media Company. 2017. p. 667. ISBN 9780992936440.