Shipping magnate Cyrus Wentworth, downcast over a disaster to his ocean liner 'Wentworth Castle' (carrying, oddly enough, an illicit shipment of Chinese bonds) is shot in his office...at the very moment of kicking out his daughter's fiance Dick Fleming. Of course, Captain Street arrests Dick, but reporter Bobbie Logan, the attractive thorn in Street's side, is so convinced he's wrong that she enlists the help of detective James Lee Wong to find the real killer. Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
In the Tong room scene with Wong, it's obvious that all of the scene, except the "Wentworth Castle" dialogue, was re-used from a previous Wong movie. The most notable clue is the Tong leader changing appearance between shots. See more »
An intriguing murder-mystery at first... then a Boris Karloff one-man-show!
For the fifth and last time, the great Boris Karloff portrays the oriental super-detective James Lee Wong who effortlessly solves the murder cases for which his police colleague Capt. Street (Grant Withers) always manages to arrest the wrong guy. Cyrus Wentworth, the magnate of a giant shipping company has been shot in his office and the obvious suspect is the young Dick Fleming, who's both the son of Cyrus' biggest business rival AND the forbidden lover of his daughter. The always-meddling reporter Miss Logan asks Wong to investigate the case and he naturally discovers that Wentworth had a lot more enemies who wanted him death, like relatives of victims who were recently killed in a shipping accident or former employees who attempted to blackmail him. The story opens downright terrific, with a great characterization of Cyrus Wentworth and his possible assassins. After about 15 minutes, Boris Karloff walks in and from that moment on he monopolizes all the attention! Of course Wong foresees the killer's every possible move and of course he always is several steps ahead of Capt. Street's investigation. Normally this exaggerated amount of 'cleverness' would annoy me tremendously; but Karloff's performance is so good and the script is so light-headed that you easily forgive all the illogicalness. The dialogues are wit and often humorous (the constant arguments of reporter Logan and police Capt. Street) and the sequences set in Chinatown are atmospheric, as usual. "Doomed to Die" is a very cheap but worthwhile thriller, especially recommended to fans of well-structured detective films and admirers of the almighty Boris Karloff. One more Wong-movie got released after this, made by a different director and not starring Karloff.
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