Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, January 15, 2015


"Tongue often hang men quicker than rope." 
CHARLIE CHAN AT MONTE CARLO (1937). Director: Eugene Forde.

Charlie Chan (Warner Oland) is in Monte Carlo with Number One Son Lee (Keye Luke) but takes a cab to Nice to catch a flight. Along the ride they come across a limo with a corpse in the back seat and a missing chauffeur. Victor Karnoff (Sidney Blackmer) explains to Chan and Inspector Joubert (Harold Huber) that the dead man is a bank messenger who was carrying a fortune in now-missing bonds. Others embroiled in the mystery include Karnoff's wife, Joan (Kay Linaker of The Night Before the Divorce); her brother, Gordon (Robert Kent of Who's Guilty?); the adventuress he's smitten with, Evelyn (Virginia Field); rival financier Savarin (Edward Raquello); and a hotel bartender named Rogers (George Lynn of The Werewolf). There are more murders and a neat conclusion. This was Oland's last performance as Chan and last picture before his death the following year. He and Luke are marvelous, as usual, and the personality of flamboyant cop Joubert fits Huber to a "t." Linaker and Kent are fine and Field [Repeat Performance] gives a typically vital performance.

Verdict: Not a bad way for Warner Oland to exit. ***.

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