Charlie Chan in Shadows Over Chinatown (1946)

April 28, 2011

One of the last times that Toler played Chan as he passed away from colon cleanser, drinking, or a combination of both. It also marked the return of Sen Yung (Jimmy Chan) to the series as he teamed with Moreland (Birmingham) to provide humor. The Abbott and Costello routine they attempted to do wasn’t successful in my opinion. The story centered around an escort service, quick marriages and then murder to collect on the insurance policy. Sound familiar? It is a similar plot to Human Monster, an Edgar Wallace story, reused in Charlie Chan in Docks of New Orleans, starring Roland Winters as Charlie, and remade with Klaus Kinski in 1961 as The Dead Eyes of London. Directed by Terry Morse the film also had Mary Gordon from Sherlock Holmes as the distressed Grandma of the female lead Tanis Chandler. I found the screenplay by Raymond Schrock to have enough twists and turns to make it interesting and the one hour passed rather quickly. This was the 38th of 47 Charlie Chan films and the one thing that sticks in my mind and brings a smile to my face is Moreland saying confusion says instead of Confucius. Just an average entry in the series. (**).

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