here. I don’t want to keep rehashing when I review another of these flicks, and there are many of them. Now onto the review.
The movie opens with Chan arriving via an airplane in France. At the airport we see a beggar asking him for some change, which he happily gives. Chan then goes to the payphone and makes a call to a woman we later find out is named Nardi. They make plans to meet later as she has some important information for him. Right away the mystery is afoot! After some other characters are introduced he makes his way to a club where Nardi is a featured dancer. In front of the crowd she is murdered, but with her dying breath tells Charlie where he can find the clues she had collected for him.
After some twists and turns including Charlie avoiding the police (whom he nearly always works with on his cases) we find out that he was hired by a bank in London to investigate the how and why behind some fake bonds that have been passed off to their customers by a bank in France. The big secrecy is due to them not wanting to cause a panic or run on the banks. That is why Charlie keeps telling everyone that he is on vacation and not a case. He does eventually bring the criminals to justice but not before his son Lee shows up, an innocent woman is accused of murder, and another body hits the floor.
I’ve watched the movies in this series many times but had forgotten how great this one is. The mystery is full of twists and turns with many locations being used to heighten the who done it. This includes a neat sequence in a sewer system that is decently creepy. I always forget that the early entries in the Chan franchise were larger budgeted studio movies (later they became staples of the Poverty Row studios). The production values here are noticeably better at least for a thirties movie. We get clues spread throughout the story so that you can guess at who the killer or killers are. This leads to a quickly paced and entertaining flick that clocks in at seventy two minutes but feels like it is over before it started.
Charlie Chan in Paris also has the only acknowledgement that I remember of the Pidgeon English aka. the overly polite and mangled accent that triggers many viewers in the series. Basically, there is a drunken creep that speaks to Charlie in an over the top and insulting imitation of him. Charlie basically calls him on his bullshit in the politest way possible, but it is acknowledged nonetheless. I thought that was interesting.
This may be one of the better if not the best entries in the entire franchise. It has been years since I sat down and watched them all so as I go thru this process for the site it is nice to get a refresher and talk about these flicks. If you are looking for a good mystery movie with a dash of international intrigue, then Charlie Chan in Paris is the movie for you. I highly recommend it.
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