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 scientist working on an important new invention which will protect Allied shipping from U-boat torpedoes has been assigned Secret Service security protection. Amazingly, despite the fact that his laboratory and experiments are located on the upper floor of his Washington mansion, he decides to host a cocktail party for friends on the first floor. Even though several of his guests are foreign nationals with shadowy pasts, he refuses to allow his bodyguards to attend because their presence might offend them. When he is killed by unknown means before joining them, the resultant summary investigation includes Honolulu detective Charlie Chan and children Tommy and Iris, later joined by Birmingham Brown, the chauffeur of one of the guests. When a preliminary autopsy reveals the scientist was electrocuted, Charlie and his associates must decide which of the suspects and red herrings is the guilty party.Written by
Gabe Taverney (email@example.com)
Even though the story is set in Washington, D.C., the film was shot in Los Angeles, California. The California State Building (1931-1975) is the government building used for Charlie Chan's office. At the VIDEO MARK of 0:04:55, an establishing shot of the State Building is shown. At the VIDEO MARK of 0:07:40 through 8:25, actor Sidney Toler walks through the lobby of the State Building and out the entrance. [Note the dramatic music underneath the exterior shot of Mr. Toler.]
The California State Building was a state governmental office building, located at 215 West 1st Street, in downtown Los Angeles. The building was found to be structurally unsafe after a 1971 earthquake, necessitating demolition. See more »
While Charlie is riding in a cab to the murdered doctor's house in "Washington, D.C.", he goes through a neighborhood full of houses with red tile roofs and palm trees in the yard. See more »
I'm pretty sure there wasn't a Chan film made that I didn't like: I preferred Oland to Toler and Fox to Monogram but am more than happy (maybe even keen!) to watch a Toler Monogram effort. They all transported you to a world of more or less cultured baddies, each hiding a thousand secrets which Charlie (and us of course) has to work his way through. Usually, as in this case, to find the murderer from a roomful of shifty twitching eyes.
Electrical scientist murdered and the secret plans stolen, Charlie with a little ... help from offspring Tommie and Iris has to decide which of the house guests did it. The Monogram house's hanging drapes and thick carpets lend a nice atmosphere to the mystery. Only gripes: the incongruously brash and childish music track and the continual visual reference to a Watching Evil Eye from a Dark Place.
Watched from the Chanthology DVD and with the widescreen TV set to mild zoomview meant it was like the first time again for me seeing this, an experience I'd have to recommend and one I want to repeat with the other titles in the set.
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