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The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932)

Englishmen race to find the tomb of Genghis Khan. They have to get there fast, as the evil genius Dr. Fu Manchu is also searching, and if he gets the mysteriously powerful relics, he and ... See full summary »

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Von Berg
...
Sir Lionel Barton
...
McLeod
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Storyline

Englishmen race to find the tomb of Genghis Khan. They have to get there fast, as the evil genius Dr. Fu Manchu is also searching, and if he gets the mysteriously powerful relics, he and his diabolical daughter will enslave the world! Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Frankenstein of the Orient!


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 November 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La máscara de Fu-Manchú  »

Box Office

Budget:

$327,627 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In filming the scene where Fu Manchu injects his mind control drug into Terry Granville's neck, 'Boris Karloff (I)' actually pushed the syringe into a baked potato, which was lying on the table next to Charles Starrett's head, out of camera range. However, each time Karloff pressed the plunger down, the potato would explode. This happened on several takes, until Karloff and Starrett couldn't do the scene without laughing. Director Charles Brabin finally gave up and dismissed the two actors for the day, saying, "Never mind! We'll shoot it tomorrow morning!" See more »

Goofs

Genghis Khan's skeleton is clearly a medical school skeleton. The removable top of the skull is very noticeable. See more »

Quotes

Nayland Smith: What do you expect to find in that tomb?
Sir Lionel Barton: A record, the golden plate, the threat of Genghis Khan's return, the golden mask he wore, and the famous golden scimitar.
Nayland Smith: Exactly, of course in your hands these things would be merely interesting archaeological specimens to go into British Museum, but should Fu Manchu put that mask across his wicked eyes and take that scimitar into his bony, cruel hands, all Asia rises. He'll declare himself Genghis Khan come to life again. And that, my friend, is what ...
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Connections

Edited into Mondo Lugosi (1987) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A lusty oriental mix
22 July 2004 | by (Copenhagen, Denmark) – See all my reviews

Wonderfully inventive exotic horror movie from the early days of talkies.

An expedition from the British Museum sets out to find the long searched for tomb of legendary warlord Genghis Khan and get to the fabled sword and mask before it is found and usurped by Dr. Fu Manchu, evil contemporary warlord with an unquenchable ambition to extinguish the white race in his lust for power.

'Mask of Fu Manchu' is well worth a watch for its stunning look alone. The sets by Cedric Gibbons are gorgeous to look at, a uniquely Hollywoodian blend of art-deco and tasteful Orientalism, photographed to fantastic effect by Tony Gaudio and evocatively lit. The acting is top-notch with Karloff an exquisitely seductive Fu Manchu and the young Loy a delight as his sadistic daughter. This film could not have been made just a couple of years later, it is decidedly pre-Code in its sexual frankness and the lusty demeanor of the characters. Ex-football star Starrett is more than sufficiently hunky stripped down to a loincloth in a torture scene! But then, the torture of this movie is always a naughty delight, it has so many things in store for us.

Obviously, the question with 'Mask of Fu Manchu' as with others of its time is, Are you able to forgive its naive racism? "You hideous yellow monster!", our heroine hisses contemptuously, but then again, the Brits aren't exactly angels either, the barbaric way these so-called scientists go about breaking open Genghis Khan's tomb, desecrating everything on their way, only barely concealing their avarice ...

A really good film, highly recommended.

7/10


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