MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 1,558 this week

Shanghai Express (1932)

Passed  -  Adventure | Drama | Romance  -  12 February 1932 (USA)
7.5
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.5/10 from 4,022 users  
Reviews: 45 user | 32 critic

Many passengers on the Shanghai Express are more concerned that the notorious Shanghai Lil is on board than the fact that a civil war is going on that may make the trip take more than three... See full summary »

Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
0Check in
0Share...

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: February

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they are excited to see in February.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

TCM
a list of 28 titles
created 07 Mar 2012
 
a list of 42 titles
created 25 May 2013
 
a list of 30 titles
created 9 months ago
 
a list of 28 titles
created 5 months ago
 
a list of 22 titles
created 3 weeks ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Shanghai Express" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Shanghai Express (1932)

Shanghai Express (1932) on IMDb 7.5/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Shanghai Express.
Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Film told in flashbacks of an older man's obsession for a woman who can belong to no-one but can frustrate everyone. The backdrop is SternbergÍs surreal and fantastic Carnaval in Spain. In ... See full summary »

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: Marlene Dietrich, Lionel Atwill, Edward Everett Horton
Morocco (1930)
Certificate: Passed Romance | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A cabaret singer and a Legionnaire fall in love, but their relationship is complicated by the results of his womanizing and due to the appearance of a rich man who wants her for himself.

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: Gary Cooper, Marlene Dietrich, Adolphe Menjou
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An elderly professor's ordered life spins dangerously out of control when he falls for a nightclub singer.

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: Emil Jannings, Marlene Dietrich, Kurt Gerron
Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The Blue Angel is a sleazy bar and the local boys go there to see Lola who is the dancer. The teacher goes there to confront his students only to fall for the dancer.

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: Emil Jannings, Marlene Dietrich, Kurt Gerron
Desire (1936)
Comedy | Romance | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An automotive engineer bound for a holiday in Spain meets a sultry jewel thief.

Director: Frank Borzage
Stars: Marlene Dietrich, Gary Cooper, John Halliday
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A blue-collar worker on New York's depressed waterfront finds his life changed after he saves a woman attempting suicide.

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: George Bancroft, Betty Compson, Olga Baclanova
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Country orphan Lily goes to Berlin to stay with her tippling aunt, and soon meets Richard, handsome sculptor across the street. Persuaded half-reluctantly to pose for Richard, her physical ... See full summary »

Director: Rouben Mamoulian
Stars: Marlene Dietrich, Brian Aherne, Lionel Atwill
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A young woman, Poppy, out for excitement in Shanghai, enters a gambling house owned by "Mother" Gin Sling, a dragon-lady who worked herself up from poverty to buy the casino. Sir Guy ... See full summary »

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: Gene Tierney, Walter Huston, Victor Mature
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The City Editor of a sleazy tabloid goes against his own journalistic ethics to resurrect a twenty year old murder case... with tragic results.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Marian Marsh, H.B. Warner
Angelas krig (1984)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
Director: Eija-Elina Bergholm
Stars: Ida-Lotta Backman, Mathieu Carrière, Jörn Donner
East Lynne (1931)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Director: Frank Lloyd
Stars: Ann Harding, Clive Brook, Conrad Nagel
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
Director: Ilmari Unho
Stars: Joel Rinne, Regina Linnanheimo, Kaija Rahola
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Captain 'Doc' Harvey
...
Hui Fei
...
Mr. Henry Chang
...
Sam Salt
...
Reverend Mr. Carmichael
Louise Closser Hale ...
Mrs. Haggerty
Gustav von Seyffertitz ...
Eric Baum
Emile Chautard ...
Major Lenard
Edit

Storyline

Many passengers on the Shanghai Express are more concerned that the notorious Shanghai Lil is on board than the fact that a civil war is going on that may make the trip take more than three days. The British Army doctor, Donald Harvey, knew Lil before she became a famous "coaster." A fellow passenger defines a coaster as "a woman who lives by her wits along the China coast." When Chinese guerillas stop the train, Dr. Harvey is selected as the hostage. Lil saves him, but can she make him believe that she really hasn't changed from the woman he loved five years before? Written by Dale O'Connor <daleoc@interaccess.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Many Men Had Loved Her -- but only one had been loved in return !


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

12 February 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El expreso de Shanghai  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD release)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »

Goofs

The telegraph forms shown on screen are filled out in Chinese and meant to be Chinese, but in fact are in English and therefore American. See more »

Quotes

Reverend Mr. Carmichael: Love without faith, like religion without faith, doesn't amount to very much.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Lili Marlene (2007) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A dream of a ghostly train and shades of black
29 August 1999 | by (Chicago, Illinois) – See all my reviews

Shanghai Express is another von Sternberg masterpiece, probably not appreciated in his day (no academy awards) and lesser known that it should be in this day. Film theory says this film was an attempt to shade degrees of blackness. At one point, Marlene Dietrich's face blooms like a white flower out of the shadows, then closes again.

Beautiful is not a big enough word enough to describe the cinematography in Shanghai Express. The plot is dreamlike and unrealistic (Sternberg hated realism), the costumes are excessive (impossible to contain in Dietrich's supposed luggage), the atmosphere is deliciously layered with decadence, exoticism (good part for Anna Mae Wong) and deterioration (broken walls, slats and fantasies), punctuated by von Sternberg's caprice (chickens wandering in front of the train -- a symbol of Dietrich's husband's profession as a chicken farmer?).

The storyline is basically a broken romance seeking to be healed between Clive Brook and Dietrich or "Shanghai Lily," the naughty lady who has sold her body the past few years to keep herself in glittery costumes and furs.

The real "story" is "Dietrich and von Sternberg visit China" on some movie lot, on their way from or to Russia (The Scarlet Empress), Spain (The Devil is a Woman), North Africa (Morocco), or somewhere in the U.S. (Blonde Venus).

Gorgeous and lots of fun!


29 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
DVD paisleyraye
One of Dietrich's best ejgreen77
Smoking gerardgraetrex
Discuss Shanghai Express (1932) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?