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Shadows of the Orient (1935)

Approved | | Action, Drama, Romance | 6 July 1935 (USA)
A classic "B" featurette about "smugglin' in Chinamen for $300 a load"

Director:

(as Burt Lynwood)

Writers:

(story) (as L.E. Heifetz), (adaptation) (as Charles Francis Royal)
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Cast

Cast overview:
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Inspector Bob Baxter
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Inspector Sullivan
Oscar Apfel ...
Judge Avery
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King Moss
Eddie Fetherston ...
James 'Flash' Dawson
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Spud Nolan
James B. Leong ...
Ching Chu
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Storyline

"Shadows of the Orient" was originally (and still is) a Larry Darmour production made under the Empire Films banner in 1935 and released in August of 1935, although Motion Picture Herald did not review it until February of 1936. Following the reorganization of Monogram, after W. Ray Johnston, Scott R. Dunlap, Trem Carr and Paul Malvern broke away from their short stay at Republic Pictures, Monogram was in need of product to fill their exhibitor committments and picked up the film from whatever state-rights limbo it was in, and sent it back out on August 13, 1937 under a Monogram Pictures logo with nothing to indicate it was a re-issue of a two year-old film. Its first New York showing was at the Central Theatre on October 11, 1937, 27 months after initial release through the Empire exchanges, and it had lost three minutes from its original 68 minutes. The Foreword tells it all: "Since the passing of the Oriental Exclusion Act the smuggling of aliens has been constant. Although the ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Love's a dangerous game, where a woman's beauty is the pawn of sinister, clutching hands! See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 July 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Orientens Skygger  »

Company Credits

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 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was first telecast Friday 2 January 1942 on New York City's pioneer commercial television station WNBT (Channel 1). See more »

Quotes

Opening crawl: Since the passing of the Oriental Exclusion Act the smuggling of aliens has been constant. Although the smuggling is less than a few years ago, when Chinese were brought into the United States from Mexico in carlots, the traffic has by no means ceased, according to immigration officials. The length of the frontier and sparsely settled regions makes patrolling impossible. These smugglers have no regard for human life and resort to any means to accomplish their selfish ends. The boss of the ring,...
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User Reviews

 
So bad, it's bad!
24 January 2009 | by (Columbus OH) – See all my reviews

I'm a fan of B-movies, but this Poverty Row film is so bad, I'm tempted not to bother reviewing it, but that cool title is what suckered me into watching it, so maybe my review will save others who might be equally tempted. This begins with a good scene that was duplicated in a later (and much better) Ronald Reagan B-movie, SECRET SERVICE OF THE AIR, in which a pilot, smuggling a Chinese family of illegal aliens, dumps them out in mid-air to their deaths when he's attacked by another plane. The pilot, angry when his boss won't pay him for the aborted delivery, calls the Feds and offers to give them the goods on the smuggling ring, but is shot to death just before the agents raid the Chinese restaurant which is the front for the gang. The leader, Sidney Blackmer, gets away, but agent Regis Toomey, his older sidekick (J. Farrell McDonald), and a prominent judge's daughter (Esther Ralston) try to infiltrate the gang, only to wind up in danger. The 70-minute movie is filled with inept photography, bad sets, and flubbed lines left in, and the lack of any background music at all only accentuates the sheer boredom of the proceedings. Even the promise of a moderately exciting air chase at the end goes nowhere. The actors, all pros who have done good B-film work elsewhere, are left at sea by bad direction and zero production values. Blackmer gets one nicely slimy, almost campy line, when he says, "Orientals have a peculiar irresistible fascination for me," but despite the promise of the melodramatic title, this one will hold no one's interest.


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