Dangerous Money (1946)

July 27, 2011

Dangerous Money (1946) was the 10th Chan picture that Monogram (#11824) produced and the next to the last one with Sidney Toler. The drama takes place on a cruise ship, the S.S. Newcastle from San Francisco that is headed to Australia. This is not a new idea in the Chan series having been done in Charlie Chan in Honolulu (1938). The plot involves a treasury agent who was on the trail of counterfeit money, stolen art goods, and valuable jewelry. While talking to Charlie an attempt is made on his life and within minutes he is knifed. The list of suspects is many and the help from his #2 son Jimmy (Victor Sen Yung) and Chattanooga Brown (Willie Best) make it a lot more difficult but the humor lightens up the picture nicely. The huge walkie talkies they use with their air names of Chop Suey and Pork Chop was hilarious. As the case unfolds there are two additional murders plus a blackmail scheme. Considering that it was 1946 some of the costumes were quite risqué! The murder weapon turned out to be a pistol/knife device and the killer Mrs. Whipple was really a man, a nice twist. Terry Morse, the director, used some great shots of eyes looking through blind stats several times during the picture. Available for free viewing on the net the picture and sound quality are acceptable. It is also available as part of a Turner Classic four film package which also includes The Trap, Dark Alibi, and The Chinese Ring. Above average entry. (**1/2)