When a troupe of showgirls with their impresario and press agent vacation at a Malibu Beach resort, two of them are garroted. Charlie takes on the case assisted by Number Two Son Jimmy and faithful chauffeur Birmingham Brown.
Victor Sen Yung
A treasury agent traveling aboard a ocean liner confides to fellow passenger Charlie Chan that he's on the trail of a counterfeiting ring operating from the South Pacific and has survived two recent attempts on his life. Chan helps him avoid a third but is helpless to prevent a knife thrown in his back in the ship's club room. Although the ship will be docking shortly in Samoa, Charlie is confident that he will unmask the killer before then. Among the suspects are an elitist reverend and his wife, a beautiful young woman traveling with forged papers, a shady loudmouth of a salesman, a larcenous ship's steward, and a professional knife-thrower. Written by
On board the S.S. Newcastle bound from Honolulu to Samoa, Charlie Chan is approached by a fellow passenger who reveals himself as Scott Pearson of the Treasure Department; he's on a strictly secret mission concerning 'hot' money on the islands, but there have already been two attempts made on his life and so he asks Charlie for help. Charlie suggests that the best place to observe all the other passengers is the lounge, where a party is being held for the crossing of the Equator - but the danger comes from OUTSIDE: through the blinds of a window, a knife shoots right into Pearson's back...
Together with Captain Black, Charlie goes through Pearson's secret papers, where a mysterious 'Lane' is mentioned - but who is he?? More or less EVERYBODY on board seems suspicious in some way: loud-mouthed 'cotton trader' Burke, a Swedish trader called Erickson and his Samoan wife, Rona Simonds who poses as a tourist, but there seems to be something wrong with her papers, and the ship's purser George Brace obviously covers up for her, strange ichthyologist Prof. Martin, Reverend Whipple and his ugly wife...
When they land in Samoa, things become even more complicated: we find out that Burke blackmails Rona, then that he himself also knows things he hasn't admitted - and then more knives come flying through the air... And finally, Charlie's favorite 'number two son' Jimmy and Chattanooga make a GREAT discovery!
A real treat for all fans of complicated crime movies - and a big joy for the fans of the 'Charlie Chan' series: Sen Yung (who'd been serving in the US Airforce Intelligence during the War!) is back again as Jimmy! Not that Benson Fong as 'Tommy', or the other 'members' of Charlie's large family who'd played his assistants in between, hadn't added a great lot of entertainment to the movies they'd played in; but Jimmy is - well, just Jimmy... Fresh and rash and self-confident as always, he and ever-frightened 'Chattanooga' Willie Best make an EXCELLENT duo here to lighten up the murderous plot!
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