6.7/10
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The General Died at Dawn (1936)

Amid the anarchy of China, an American mercenary tangles with a ruthless warlord.

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(screen play), (based on a story by)
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Gen. Yang
...
Mr. Wu
...
Peter Perrie
...
Brighton
J.M. Kerrigan ...
Leach
...
Oxford
Lee Tung Foo ...
Mr. Chen (as Lee Tung-Foo)
...
Stewart
Val Duran ...
Wong
...
Bartender
...
Yang's Military Advisor (as Hans Furberg)
John O'Hara ...
Newspaper Reporter on Train
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Storyline

In revolution-torn China, American mercenary O'Hara is entrusted with a perilous mission, to get arms for the helpless authorities in a province ravaged by warlord General Yang. On the train to Shanghai, he meets Judy Perrie, whose father is in league with Yang. Will Judy regret agreeing to lure O'Hara to his doom, and if so, can she make it up to him? The balance of power seesaws to a perilous conclusion. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

warlord | mercenary | china | See All (3) »


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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 October 1936 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Chinese Gold  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The main character, O'Hara, is based on the real-life adventurer Morris "Two-Gun" Cohen (1887-1970). Born in Poland to a Jewish family, Cohen grew up in the tough streets of London's East End. As a teenager, he moved to western Canada and became a ranch hand and gambler in Saskatchewan, and later a highly successful real-estate agent in Alberta. During World War I he fought in Europe with the Canadian Railway Troops. His friendship with Chinese workers on the Canadian-Pacific Railroad prompted him to go to China in the 1920s. After negotiating a railroad deal with Dr. Yat-sen Sun, Cohen became a personal bodyguard to Sun and a trainer of Sun's private army. After Sun's death in 1925, Cohen ran guns for various Chinese warlords throughout the 1930s. When the Japanese invaded China in 1937, Cohen continued to supply Chinese resistance forces with arms and served with the British SOE. In 1941, following the fall of Hong Kong, he was captured by the Japanese and put in a prison camp, but was traded to the English in 1943 in a rare prisoner exchange. After the war, Cohen continued to operate in China as an agent for various British firms, including Rolls-Royce and Decca Radar. His former dealings with Chinese warlords kept him in good standing with Chinese Communist officials until his death in 1970. See more »

Goofs

While arguing with Peter, Judy slams a book down on the desk. A couple of other books on the corner of the desk disappear in a later scene. See more »

Quotes

O'Hara: We could've made wonderful music together.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits all appear on the sails of boats. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hogan's Heroes: The Kommandant Dies at Dawn (1969) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Let your imaginations soar!
17 March 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The scene in the train where femme fatal Judy Perrie seduces O'Hara is a masterpiece of steamy sensuality. Carroll's silky-smooth alabaster skin and flaxen hair, gorgeously highlighted by her exquisitely outlined lips and eyes, were masterfully exploited by director Lewis Milestone and some extremely skilled cameramen, as her feminine delights proved too much for the otherwise unswervingly steadfast O'Hara. Throughout, the curiously uneven script takes a decided turn for the better, with both participants delivering some highly suggestive verbal exchanges, brimming with innuendo and wit, culminating with O'Hara mockingly asking Judie if he can kiss her, only to receive in return the playful reply that he must first ask her mother. He then looks into the neighboring compartment and makes the request in mock earnestness, for there is no Mrs. Perrie! All the while, the sinister war lord General Yang and his dark forces are preparing to intercept the train, "relieve" O'Hara of the funds he's set to deliver to Mr. Wu for the sole purpose of ridding the province of the scurrilous Yang. Let your imaginations soar, esteemed classic film buffs, for this is truly great film-making.


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