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

Thursday, January 22, 2015


Ana Maria Custodio and Manuel Arbo
ERAN TRECE/CHARLIE CHAN CARRIES ON (1931). Director: David Howard.

The American film Charlie Chan Carries On has been lost, unfortunately, but apparently the same plot was used for the Spanish-language version with Manuel Arbo playing Charlie Chan. [A very similar plot was later used for Charlie Chan's Murder Cruise.] When a man on a tour is found murdered in his hotel room, Inspector Duff (Rafael Calvo) of Scotland Yard takes charge. Naturally the other members of the tour come under suspicion, and there are more murders from a rather audacious killer. Things really get serious when someone even takes a shot at Duff in the police station! The movie is half over before Charlie Chan shows up and eventually solves the case. Manuel Arbo makes Chan seem a bit like a nitwit and overdoes the smiling routine. The other Spanish actors are all effective, however -- Calvo and Ana Maria Custodio make the best impression as the cop and the first victim's daughter -- and the story line is a good one.

Verdict: Charlie Chan from an alternate dimension. **1/2.

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