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Charlie Chan at Treasure Island (1939)

7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 1,019 users  
Reviews: 26 user | 11 critic

Charlie's investigation of a phony psychic during the 1939 World Exposition on San Francisco's Treasure Island leads him to expose a suicide as murder.

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(original story and screen play by), (based on: the character "Charlie Chan" created by)
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Title: Charlie Chan at Treasure Island (1939)

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

When Charlie's old friend from Scotland Yard is murdered when they attend a police convention in New York, Chan picks up the case he was working on.

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A public defender enlists Charlie to exonerate one of his clients, an ex-con falsely accused of bank robbery and murder, scheduled for execution in nine days.

Director: Phil Karlson
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

While Charlie is distracted with the birth of his first grandchild, son Jimmy impersonates his father in order to investigate a murder aboard a freighter in the harbor.

Director: H. Bruce Humberstone
Stars: Sidney Toler, Phyllis Brooks, Victor Sen Yung
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Mary Whitman, an old friend of Charlie's in Reno for a divorce, finds herself accused of murdering the woman her husband planned to marry after the decree became final.

Director: Norman Foster
Stars: Sidney Toler, Ricardo Cortez, Phyllis Brooks
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

While visiting the circus with his family, Charlie is recruited by the big top's co-owner to investigate threatening letters that he's received.

Director: Harry Lachman
Stars: Warner Oland, Keye Luke, George Brasno
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A treasury agent on the trail of counterfeit money confides to fellow ocean liner passenger Charlie Chan that there have been two attempts on his life.

Director: Terry O. Morse
Stars: Sidney Toler, Gloria Warren, Victor Sen Yung
Comedy | Crime | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The heir to a huge fortune is presumed drowned, then shows up, is then murdered.

Director: Gordon Wiles
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Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

When a strategically important new aerial guidance system is stolen, Charlie traces it to the Berlin Olympics, where he has to battle spies and enemy agents to retrieve it.

Director: H. Bruce Humberstone
Stars: Warner Oland, Katherine DeMille, Pauline Moore
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Charlie tries to discover the identity of a strangler who strikes multiple times on a cruise ship bound from Honolulu to California.

Director: Eugene Forde
Stars: Sidney Toler, Marjorie Weaver, Lionel Atwill
Mystery
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Charlie steps in to solve the murder of a wealthy American found dead in a London hotel. Settings include London, Nice, San Remo, Honolulu and Hong Kong. Fast-paced with lots of wisecracking.

Director: Hamilton MacFadden
Stars: Warner Oland, John Garrick, Marguerite Churchill
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Chan is faced with suspects in a stolen atomic bomb formula case, that are being killed with bullets that are not fired from a gun.

Director: Phil Rosen
Stars: Sidney Toler, Fortunio Bonanova, Benson Fong
Comedy | Crime | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

While investigating the theft of antiquities from an ancient tomb excavation , Charlie discovers that the body of the expedition's leader concealed inside the mummy's wrappings.

Director: Louis King
Stars: Warner Oland, Pat Paterson, Thomas Beck
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Pauline Moore ...
Eve
Victor Sen Yung ...
Jimmy Chan (as Sen Yung)
...
Pete Lewis
June Gale ...
...
Thomas Gregory (as Douglas Dumbrille)
...
Stella Essex
Billie Seward ...
Bessie Sibley
Wally Vernon ...
Elmer Kelner
Donald MacBride ...
Chief J.J. Kilvaine
Charles Halton ...
Redley
Trevor Bardette ...
Abdul
Louis Jean Heydt ...
Paul Essex
Edit

Storyline

A novelist friend of Charlie's appears to have committed suicide. At the international Exposition held on San Francisco Bay's Treasure Island Charlie shows that Zodiac, a phony mystic who blackmails clients, is the culprit. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The strange case of murder by magic!


Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 September 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Charlie Chan na Ilha do Tesouro  »

Box Office

Budget:

$120,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA High Fidelity Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The Treasure Island referred to in the title is a man-made island in San Francisco Bay that was built in 1936 & 1937 in anticipation of it hosting the Golden Gate International Exposition of 1939 & 1940. After the fair closed the U.S. Navy used the site for many years. Since the 1980's the site has been used by many film & television production companies with aircraft hangars 2 & 3 converted to sound stages. See more »

Goofs

Just before the plane from Hawai'i to San Francisco lands, Chan and the other passengers are told they have to go through customs. Though not yet a state, Hawai'i was already under U.S. jurisdiction and therefore passengers flying from there to the U.S. mainland would not have had to go through customs. See more »

Quotes

[after a police investigation results in another murder attempt]
Chief J.J. Kilvaine: Well, Charlie, if this don't send me back to pounding pavement on Billy Goat Hill, I'm an eskimo!
Charlie Chan: Not necessary to take such icy view of situation.
See more »

Connections

Followed by Docks of New Orleans (1948) See more »

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User Reviews

A chilling mystery with an even chillier addendum
2 December 2002 | by See all my reviews

This worthy addition to the Charlie Chan canon is chock full of the usual genre gimmicks: lightening storms, seances and Confucianism. The inscrutable Sydney Toler travels to the Century of Progress Exhibition in San Francisco to investigate the apparent suicide of a friend. Naturally his "number two son" Jimmy tags along to provide comic relief. Young Cesar Romero plays a skeptical ghost-buster. Pauline Moore is typically shrill and hysterical. There is no sign of Mantan Moreland at all, thank heavens. Director Norman Foster and cinematographer Virgil Miller suffuse everything with ominous gloom. By any standard, this mystery-thriller is a complete success. If you need further chills, it might interest you to know that California's uncaptured Zodiac Killer is believed to have modeled certain elements of his M.O. upon the villain of this film.


4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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