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The Shanghai Cobra (1945) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

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Director:
Writers:
George Callahan (screenplay) &
George Wallace Sayre (screenplay) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Shanghai Cobra on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 September 1945 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Charlie Chan at his best in his most thrilling adventure!
Plot:
Someone is attempting to steal radium stored in a bank. Death by cobra venom connects a number of murders. Charlie investigates. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Better Than Most Monogram Chan Films--But That's Not Saying Much See more (20 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Sidney Toler ... Charlie Chan
Mantan Moreland ... Birmingham Brown
Benson Fong ... Tommy Chan
James Cardwell ... Ned Stewart
Joan Barclay ... Paula Webb
Addison Richards ... John Adams
Arthur Loft ... Bradford Harris
Janet Warren ... Record Machine Operator
Gene Roth ... Morgan (as Gene Stutenroth)
Joe Devlin ... Taylor
James Flavin ... H.R. Jarvis
Roy Gordon ... Walter Fletcher
Walter Fenner ... Police Inspector Harry Davis
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Andy Andrews ... Patrolman Outside Joe's (uncredited)
George Chandler ... Joe, Coffee Shop Owner (uncredited)
Cyril Delevanti ... Detective Larkin (uncredited)
John Goldsworthy ... Inspector Mainwaring (uncredited)
Stephen Gregory ... Samuel Black (uncredited)
Karen Knight ... Switchboard Supervisor (uncredited)
Mary Moore ... Rita, Laundry Clerk (uncredited)
Paul Newlan ... Big Bank Guard (uncredited)
Diane Quillan ... Phone Operator (uncredited)
Bob Reeves ... Police Officer (uncredited)
Jack Richardson ... Letter Carrier (uncredited)
William Ruhl ... Mr. Grey (uncredited)

Directed by
Phil Karlson 
 
Writing credits
George Callahan (screenplay) &
George Wallace Sayre (screenplay)

George Callahan (original story)

Earl Derr Biggers (characters)

Produced by
James S. Burkett .... producer
 
Cinematography by
Vincent J. Farrar  (as Vincent Farrar)
 
Film Editing by
Ace Herman 
 
Art Direction by
Dave Milton (uncredited)
 
Set Decoration by
Vin Taylor (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Glenn Cook .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Eddie Davis .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Tom Lambert .... sound recordist
 
Visual Effects by
Mario Castegnaro .... transparency shots (uncredited)
Ray Mercer .... photographic effects (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Al Nicklin .... second camera operator (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Edward J. Kay .... musical director
William A. Wilmarth .... music mixer (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Ron Ormond .... technical director (uncredited)
 

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Charlie Chan in the Shanghai Cobra" - USA (informal title)
See more »
Runtime:
64 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Certification:
UK:A | UK:PG (video) | USA:Approved (Certificate #10989)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The thirty-fourth of forty-seven Charlie Chan movies.See more »
Goofs:
Errors in geography: A building supposedly located in Washington, D.C. has the California state flag flying from its flagpole.See more »
Quotes:
Charlie Chan:Too many hands sometime spoil pudding.See more »

FAQ

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7 out of 12 people found the following review useful.
Better Than Most Monogram Chan Films--But That's Not Saying Much, 21 June 2007
Author: gftbiloxi (gftbiloxi@yahoo.com) from Biloxi, Mississippi

Loosely based on novels by Earl Derr Biggers, 20th Century Fox's Charlie Chan series proved an audience favorite--but when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor the studio feared audiences would turn against its Asian hero. This was a miscalculation: actor Sidney Toler took the role to "poverty row" Monogram Studios, where he continued to portray the character in eleven more films made between 1944 and his death in 1947.

20th Century Fox had regarded the Chan films as inexpensive "B" movies, but even so the studio took considerable care with them: the plots were often silly, but the pace was sharp, the dialogue witty, and the casts (which featured the likes of Bela Lugosi and Ray Milland) always expert. The result was a kindly charm which has stood the test of time. Monogram was a different matter: Chan films were "B" movies plain and simple. Little care was taken with scripts or cast and resulting films were flat, mediocre at best, virtually unwatchable at worst.

Thanks to an adequate cast and a few interesting plot devices, THE SHANGHAI COBRA is among the best of the Monogram-made Chan films--but even so it barely manages to achieve a consistent mediocrity. In this particularly entry, Chan (Sidney Toler) is called upon to investigate a murderer who kills with what appears to be a cobra-like bite; at the same time, he decides to make certain that a government supply of radium tucked away in a bank vault, of all places, remains secure. Do these two seemingly unrelated plot lines come together? Well... could be! Sidney Toler is always enjoyable as Chan, but most of his Monogram performances seemed "phoned in"--and that is as true of COBRA as it is of any Monogram Chan film. As usual, the really enjoyable performer is Mantan Mooreland. Changing times have led us to look upon Moreland's brand of comedy as demeaning to African-Americans, but he was an expert actor and comic, and taken within the context of what was possible for a black actor in the 1940s his work has tremendous charm and innocence.

Fans of the 20th Century Fox series are likely to find Monogram's Chan a significant disappointment and newcomers who like the Monogram films will probably consider them third-rate after encountering the Fox films. Like other Monogram Chan films, THE SHANGHAI COBRA is best left to determined collectors. Four stars, and that's being generous.

GFT, Amazon Reviewer

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