7.2/10
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Charlie Chan's Secret (1936)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 10 January 1936 (USA)
The heir to a huge fortune is presumed drowned, then shows up, is then murdered.

Director:

Gordon Wiles

Writers:

Robert Ellis (screenplay), Helen Logan (screenplay) | 4 more credits »
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More Like This 

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Hired to investigate forged bonds, Charlie is thwarted by the murder of his undercover agent, but the arrival of son Lee helps him uncover the true culprits.

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Charlie visits a wealthy country home in England. Suspects in the murder range from a housekeeper, to a stableman, to a lawyer.

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The unsolved murder of a Hollywood actor several years earlier and an enigmatic psychic are the keys to help Charlie solve the Honolulu stabbing death of a beautiful actress.

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When a friend of Charlie's is found kicked to death by his own race horse on board a Honolulu-bound liner, the detective discovers foul play and uncovers an international gambling ring.

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Charlie's investigation of a phony psychic during the 1939 World Exposition on San Francisco's Treasure Island leads him to expose a suicide as murder.

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While visiting the circus with his family, Charlie is recruited by the big top's co-owner to investigate threatening letters that he's received.

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When a strategically important new aerial guidance system is stolen, Charlie traces it to the Berlin Olympics, where he has to battle spies and enemy agents to retrieve it.

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Although Charlie and Lee are in Monaco for an art exhibit, they become caught up in a feud between rival financiers which involves the Chans in a web of blackmail and murder.

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Returning from European exile where she avoided testifying against her criminal associates, a former singer with a tell-all diary is murdered to ensure her silence.

Director: Eugene Forde
Stars: Warner Oland, Keye Luke, Joan Marsh
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Warner Oland ... Charlie Chan
Rosina Lawrence ... Alice Lowell
Charles Quigley ... Dick Williams
Henrietta Crosman ... Henrietta Lowell
Edward Trevor Edward Trevor ... Fred Gage
Astrid Allwyn ... Janice Gage
Herbert Mundin ... Baxter
Jonathan Hale ... Warren T. Phelps
Egon Brecher Egon Brecher ... Ulrich
Gloria Roy Gloria Roy ... Carlotta
Ivan Miller Ivan Miller ... Inspector Morton
Arthur Edmund Carewe ... Prof. Bowen (as Arthur Edmund Carew)
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Storyline

An ocean liner sinks off Honolulu and Allen Colby, heir to millions, is presumed dead...but local sleuth Charlie Chan is not so sure, and flies to San Francisco to investigate further. Somehow, the missing Colby is there ahead of him...but is knifed in the back before seeing anyone. Further events revolve around spiritualist Mrs. Lowell, her family of suspicious characters, and the spooky, untenanted Colby mansion, where the body turns up during a seance! Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

San Francisco is the scene of Chan's newest and most baffling mystery!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 January 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Charlie Chanova skrivnost See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Copyright 1935, and the last Warner Oland entry NOT to feature Keye Luke. See more »

Goofs

When Charlie is searching the house while using a flashlight, the beam of light is not from the flashlight, angle is wrong and his wrist is exposed in the beam of light. See more »

Quotes

Baxter: Now, I think ...
Henrietta Lowell: You don't think. You think you think. I think!
See more »

Connections

Followed by The Scarlet Clue (1945) See more »

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User Reviews

 
One of the best Chans
14 August 2002 | by LoringSee all my reviews

A murder is revealed at a seance. All in attendance had motive and opportunity. There are a lots of nice tricks employed at the seance that Charlie has to figure out. Even after a plethora of red herrings, it still could be anyone when all are assembled in a typical ending in which Charlie pulls a surprise to reveal the criminal. There is no #1 or #2 son here, and Herbert Mundin, as the butler, who stands in for #1 and #2 to provide the laughs, is really annoyingly silly, more in the mode of Mantan Moreland in the later bad Chan films only minus the racism. However, he gives the crusty matriarch of the family a chance to deliver some rib-tickling lines at his expense. Listen for them. Oland is the best of the Chans and performs the role with dignity and some humor. You get the feeling that, although he isn't a Chinese actor, he respects the character. No "Confucius Say" here. I enjoy watching this film now and again and think anyone into old-style mysteries will too.


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