While steaming from Honolulu to Los Angeles the owner of a prize racehorse headed for the Santa Anita Handicap is killed, apparently kicked to death by his stallion. Not so, deduces Charlie. Later he exposes efforts to fix a race at the famous track. Written by
Ed Stephan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When the climactic race begins, only half of the horses announced (Gringo, Wild Bill, Shrapnel, Gallant Lad, Golden Fleece, Elsie Lee, Avalanche, Hold Away) match the names seen earlier on the odds board (Golden Fleece, Money Maker, Shrapnel, Blue Boy, Court Jester, Gallant Lad, Avalanche, Pico). See more »
Like a breath of fresh air, director H. Bruce Humberstone breathes new life into the Warner Oland Chan series. A good murder mystery, and one that the viewer might actually solve if s/he is very observant, we are treated to Chan and No. 1 son Lee crossing swords with a gambling syndicate and ultimately unmasking their leader. `No man is poor who have worthy son.' We know that a horse has been manipulated and abused by its trainer Bagley but we still do not know who is the brains and money behind it all even after the gang is arrested. Chan outsmarts and outwits the leader who is tricked into revelation. Although this final exposure is initially unseen by the audience, there is a major clue played out earlier that should lead the viewer to suspect the right person if you are watching. And of course there are many misleading clues: `Roots of tree lead in many directions.' Chan and son escape assault and kidnapping and Lee again gets to demonstrate his ability at disguise this time as a Chinese laundry man. Lee gets to drive the laundry truck much as we have seen in earlier Mack Sennett comedies. Like in many Chan movies, portrayal of black stable boy with monkey must have been more acceptable to audiences of the time but today should simply be cut. Similarly Chan says at end: `Good wife best household furniture' brought a remark from my wife. Perhaps that too should be cut for today's audience. Minor note is that the director appears as one of the gang. Much better than most of this series. Recommended.
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