China, 7th century. On their way to a provincial centre Judge Dee and his three wives spend the night at a taoist monastery. Soon the judge discovers that the secluded place holds a secret ... See full summary »
China, 7th century. On their way to a provincial centre Judge Dee and his three wives spend the night at a taoist monastery. Soon the judge discovers that the secluded place holds a secret - the former abbot died of unnatural causes. After a number of mysterious events and more cases of murder Dee tracks down the true villain. Written by
Otto Oberhauser <Oberhauser@cc.univie.ac.at>
In the novel "The Haunted Monastery", on which this movie is based, Jade Mirror is the name of the dead, embalmed former abbot. In the movie, this name is given as that of Judge Dee's first wife. In the 16 Judge Dee books written by Robert van Gulik, Dee's first and second wives' names are never mentioned. His third wife is only mentioned by her family name, (Miss) Tsao, prior to her marriage to the magistrate. Her personal name is never given. See more »
All the signs were there that this would have been a series, and I am sure I would have watched and enjoyed it, just as I watched and enjoyed the "Ellery Queen" series of about the same vintage, and the later (and better) "Nero Wolfe" on A&E. This one shares their format of an interesting setting used to lay out the facts of a classical-style mystery story, and you get the chance to solve it yourself. But, for some sad reason, even though mysteries are an enduringly popular genre in print, this type of TV just never quite catches on.
The decision to set the story in old China was clever, but maybe the audience in 1974 expected a kung fu movie (which, much as I like that genre too, I was glad to see they had the courage to almost completely set aside in favor of another type of story). No idea where you might get to see this one today, but if it shows up on late-night TV, set your VCR.
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