5.5/10
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The Fatal Hour (1940)

Approved | | Crime, Mystery, Thriller | 15 January 1940 (USA)
When Captain Street's best friend Dan Grady is murdered, Street enlists the help of Chinese detective James Lee Wong. Mr. Wong uncovers a smuggling ring on the waterfront of San Francisco ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (adaptation) (as Joseph West) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Harry 'Hardway' Lockett
...
Frank Belden, Jr.
...
Tanya Serova
...
Det. Ballard
...
Frank Belden Sr.
...
Griswold (as Jason Robards)
...
Jeweler
Jack Kennedy ...
Mike, Police Sergeant
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Storyline

When Captain Street's best friend Dan Grady is murdered, Street enlists the help of Chinese detective James Lee Wong. Mr. Wong uncovers a smuggling ring on the waterfront of San Francisco and unmasks the killer, though not until several more murders occur. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

15 January 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Hora Fatal  »

Company Credits

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 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The earliest documented telecasts of this film took place in Los Angeles Monday 21 November 1949 on KTLA (Channel 5) and in New York City Saturday 10 June 1950 on Summer Theater on WPIX (Channel 11). See more »

Goofs

When Frank goes to see his father to tell him he is marrying Tanya, a shadow of the boom microphone can be seen moving on the wall above them at the top of the frame. See more »

Quotes

Capt. Bill Street: I'll see you later.
Roberta 'Bobbie' Logan: Not me, flatfoot. Get one of the nurses out of the receiving hospital. They don't mind a pain in the neck.
See more »

Connections

Followed by Phantom of Chinatown (1940) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Wong Takes a Back Seat
29 March 2017 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

The Fatal Hour (1940)

** (out of 4)

Captain Street (Grant Withers) gets word that his best friend's body has been pulled from a river. Soon Mr. Wong (Boris Karloff) offers to help with the case and the two uncover a smuggling ring that the friend was trying to bust.

The fourth film in Monogram's Mr. Wong series is a bit different than the previous three but it never rises above its "B" movie production. What makes this fourth film so different is the fact that it's Captain Street and his girlfriend/reporter who gets the spotlight while Wong is basically made to be a supporting character.

I actually thought this aspect of the film made it worth a bit better than the previous film, MR. WONG IN CHINATOWN. I actually thought Withers was quite good in the lead and his character was written well enough to where you could be entertained by him and I also thought Marjorie Reynolds was good as the girlfriend. Some of their back-and-forth fighting got a bit old but I thought both actors were good. Karloff was also good in his role but once again he made no attempt to even appear Asian.

The biggest problem with this film is that the story itself just isn't all that interesting. It's decent enough for a "B" movie but it's just not good enough to where you could build any real interest in it. There's certainly no tension and the mystery aspect just isn't as strong as it needed to be to make the film more successful.


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