Mr Moto competes with a gang of ruthless treasure-hunters for possession of seven scrolls which, when brought together, form a map which reveals the location of the tomb of Genghis Khan, reputed to contain fabulous treasure. Moto already has one scroll, but the rest are owned by Prince Chung and his mother, who consider it a sacred duty to their ancestors to protect the scrolls and the secret of the Khan's tomb. Written by
Daniel Frankham <danielf@my-Deja.com>
"Please don't be alarmed. I'm only attempting to break into the safe."
Mr. Moto (Peter Lorre) is out to find ancient scrolls that, when put together, will create a map to the tomb of Genghis Khan. He must contend with nefarious Sidney Blackmer & co. Second in the Mr. Moto detective series is quite possibly the best. Nice cast that includes Sig Ruman and Thomas Beck, who were both in Think Fast, Mr. Moto. John Carradine plays a disreputable antiquities dealer. Sidney Blackmer was born with a permanent scowl on his face that made him an easy choice to play the villain in movies like this. Philip Ahn gives a sensitive, dignified performance as Prince Chung. He really steals the show from the more well-known supporting actors.
The interesting thing about Mr. Moto was that he was not above breaking the law or even killing. He even makes jokes about it. I'm not sure how they got away with this in a picture made after the Code was in full force. It's one of the (many) things that separates this series from Charlie Chan. But it's also one of the drawbacks as you never really feel any emotional connection to Moto as you do with Chan. Still, it's a fun series and this is probably the best of the lot.
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