7.0/10
1,068
35 user 10 critic

Black Magic (1944)

Approved | | Comedy, Crime, Drama | 19 August 1944 (USA)
Charlie searches for a murderer amidst numerous ghosts conjured up by a strange variety of spiritualists and occultists.

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Writers:

(characters), (original screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Frances Chan ...
Frances Chan
...
Helen Beverly ...
Norma Duncan / Nancy Wood (as Helen Beverley)
Jacqueline deWit ...
Justine Bonner
Geraldine Wall ...
Harriet Green
...
Officer Rafferty
...
Paul Hamlin
...
Dawson, Police Lab
...
Vera Starkey
Harry Depp ...
Charles Edwards
Charles Jordan ...
Tom Starkey
...
William Bonner (as Richard Gordon)
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Storyline

Because Charlie Chan plans to return to Honolulu, he no longer needs the services of Birmingham, who gets a job as butler for William and Justine Bonner, two apparently phony psychics who regularly host occult activities in their home. When Charlie's pretty daughter Frances attends a séance out of curiosity, Mr. Bonner is shot, and she becomes an immediate suspect. Charlie postpones his trip home to help with the investigation, which is made problematic when no bullet can be found in the wound and a hypnotized Mrs. Bonner is compelled to commit suicide by jumping off the roof of a downtown building. Written by duke1029

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Weirdest case of the screen's top sleuth! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 August 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Charlie Chan in Black Magic  »

Box Office

Budget:

$75,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although Charlie Chan's daughters appeared with him in previous films (including Charlie Chan in Honolulu (1938) and Charlie Chan at the Circus (1936)), this is the only film in which a daughter (Frances) plays the assistant role usually done by one of Chan's sons (Lee, Jimmy, Tommy). See more »

Goofs

When Charlie first declares himself psychic to Sgt. Matthews, we can see the pole held by a stagehand that makes a white handkerchief flutter over Charlie's head. See more »

Quotes

Frances Chan: You know, Pop, I got an idea about this Bonner case.
Charlie Chan: Water on brain now leaking, huh?
See more »

Connections

Follows The House Without a Key (1926) See more »

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User Reviews

Kind of dull but acceptable
19 March 2002 | by (Jacksonville, FL) – See all my reviews

Charlie Chan in Black Magic combines some decent suspense with average characters. The movie apparently is lower budget and doesn't stand up as well against Charlie Chan at Treasure Island and Charlie Chan's Secret, the other Chan movies with seances. The Monogram Chans are pretty much built around Charlie and his skills while the rest of the action often deteriorates into comedy. The great settings of the earlier Chans are greatly missed. Charlie Chan in Black Magic does have some nice elements and the missing bullet theory is pretty clever. The plot isn't as dull as other Monogram Chans even though the characters are pretty standard and forgettable. The acting is wooden in spots, especially Frances Chan as (drum roll) Frances Chan. She's great to look at and a nice change of pace from the bumbling Chan sons but her acting isn't the best. Mantan Moreland does his standard coward routine as the Jar Jar Binks of Chan movies. He's a funny guy given shameful material. The atmosphere isn't as good as other Chans but is passable, as is the rest of the movie even though the seance idea has been done and the movie is pretty forgettable.

6.1/10


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