While steaming from Honolulu to Los Angeles the owner of a prize racehorse headed for the Santa Anita Handicap is killed, apparently kicked to death by his stallion. Not so, deduces Charlie. Later he exposes efforts to fix a race at the famous track.Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
A better than usual plot helps this Charlie Chan film to be more than just a time-passer
This film begins with Chan in Honolulu giving a forensics lecture to policemen. However, Lee Chan (Charlie's "Number One Son") interrupts to announce that "the big race is about to begin and I've got a hot tip"--at which point all the cops turn on the radio and begin cheering. Oddly, the race is being held in Australia and I find it hard to believe the people in Hawaii would care THAT much! Later, when the horse is on its way to the West Coast of the US, the ship with the horse is met by Charlie Chan since the man who raised the horse has been killed and he was a friend of Chan. Although it appears that he was kicked to death by his prize horse, Charlie quickly deduces that it was murder! It seems that a gambling syndicate is heavily involved in murder and mayhem in an attempt to make a huge haul at an upcoming race and it's up to Charlie to unravel it all and make sure the guilty pay.
Compared to other Chan films, this one has a much better plot, though the plot has been used, in part, before. While complex, the plot is quite thrilling and does a lot to help the film. Additionally, the best of the Chan sidekicks, Number One Son ('Lee') is on hand to provide some comic relief and occasional assistance.
Excellent acting, pacing and plot--this one is a triple crown winner of a B-movie.
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