CHARLIE CHAN AT THE OLYMPICS (1937)
Article #1322 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 10-27-2004
Posting Date: 3-26-2005
Directed by H. Bruce Humberstone
Featuring Warner Oland, Katherine DeMille, Pauline Moore
Charlie Chan’s investigation of the theft of a robot pilot device (that allows planes to be guided by remote control) takes him to Berlin during the Olympic games.
Yes, it’s that old science fiction mainstay, the radio controlled airplane, that serves as the fantastic content of this entry in the Charlie Chan series. It’s also one of the best of the series, with plot developments that never stop coming, a fast moving story, and even a certain amount of emotional resonance when Chan’s son is kidnapped. The movie is also full of familiar faces; Katherine DeMille appeared with Boris Karloff in THE BLACK ROOM, Allan Lane became a well-known western star and eventually provided the voice for Mr. Ed, C. Henry Gordon appeared in several Charlie Chan adventures, and has a distinctive moustache, and Minerva Urecal has a memorable cameo as a matron of a girl’s dormitory. John Carradine was also to have been on hand, but his scenes were deleted. The movie also makes excellent use of Olympic stock footage; it is very well incorporated into the action.