Charlie Chan Collection, Vol. 4


Charlie Chan in Honolulu (1938)       Charlie Chan in Reno (1939)

Charlie Chan at Treasure Island (1939)       City in Darkness (1939)

 

Fans of detective Charlie Chan's suspenseful mysteries and fortune cookie wisdom will find joy as they dodge bullets with some of the Chinese policeman's most thrilling and dangerous cases. A staple of 30s and 40s Hollywood, Charlie Chan's profound wit and lighthearted counsel in the face of the criminal element has made him a cinematic icon, transcending generations and stereotypes to become one of film's most beloved crime-solvers. Four of Charlie Chan's most-ingenious cases make their DVD debut in The Charlie Chan Collection “Volume Four“ starring the 'successor' Sidney Toler.

Titles

 


 

Charlie Chan in Honolulu (1938) - Although immortality is almost the last thing we would expect of a Chinese detective, Charlie Chan appears to have swallowed the elixir. He has survived the death of his author, Earl Derr Biggers, and now, with Sidney Toler in the title role, seems capable of getting along without his screen creator, Warner Oland. "Charlie Chan in Honolulu," at the Central, is practically a letter-perfect duplicate of all the other Chan films—beginning with the body on the floor and ending with Charlie saying "thank you so much" to the snarling killer. It is the usual, red-herring scented, passably diverting mystery film.

Excerpt from NY Times located HERE
 

Charlie Chan in Reno (1939) - Still pursuing his profitable homicide line, Charlie Chan cracks another murder case wide open in "C. C. in Reno," latest of the seemingly endless series, which opened at the Globe yesterday. Although the divorce colony provides a new backdrop, the props are unchanged and the routine is the same. Not that we blame Chan for refusing to alter his style: he hasn't lost a killer yet. Still there is a certain monotony about his final tableaux: the roomful of suspects, the pounce upon the least suspicious member of the cast, the astonishing disclosure of the telltale bit of evidence, the murderer's snarled or sheepish admission of guilt.

Excerpt from NY Times located HERE
 

Charlie Chan at Treasure Island (1939) - Unless Twentieth Century-Fox soon decides to put a halt to Charlie Chan's activities, there won't be a supporting cast left intact in all Hollywood. Chan (currently operating at the Palace on San Francisco's "Treasure Island") appears to be irrevocably committed, in his murder-solving pursuits, to the Frank Buck technique with this minor variation: where Mr. Buck stakes out a bleating goat and brings the tiger back alive, Chan stakes out members of his supporting cast and brings 'em back dead. By this simple process of elimination he usually gets his murderer, but the incidental carnage is never short of terrific.

Excerpt from NY Times located HERE
 

Charlie Chan in City in Darkness (1939) - In this episode of the popular detective series, Chan attends a WW I reunion in Paris. While catching up with his buddies, he gets entangled in the investigation of the murder of a munitions maker who sent arms to the other side. The film was created in response to the Munich crisis of 1938. At the film's end Charlie delivers a stern warning about bargaining at conference tables.

Excerpt Sandra Brennan, All Movie Guide

Posters

Theatrical Releases: Various from 1938 - 1939

  DVD Reviews

DVD Review: 20th Century Fox - Region 1 - NTSC

DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Recommend:

DVDBeaver whole-heartedly recommend all five of the Fox Charlie Chan Boxsets:

 

Distribution 20th Century Fox - Region 1 - NTSC
Time: About 6 hrs. total on four discs (one is dual sided)
Audio English (original mono), English (stereo) 
Subtitles English, Spanish, French, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: 20th Century Fox

Aspect Ratio:
All Original Aspect Ratios - 1.33 

Edition Details:

• Disc 1: CHARLIE CHAN IN HONOLULU
Documentaries - "Sidney Toler:The Man Who Became Chan"
Featurettes:
- "Reinventing Chan"
- "Charlie Chan's Courage: A Re-creation of a Lost Chan Film"
• Disc 2: CHARLIE CHAN IN RENO
- Behind the Scenes - "Reno Memories"
- Documentaries:

- "Chan's Killer Actress: Kay Linaker"
Featurette:
- "Welcome to Reno: America's Divorce Resort"
Trailers: Trailer
• Disc 3: CHARLIE CHAN AT TREASURE ISLAND
Audio Commentaries - Ken Hanke - Film Critic; John Cork - Film Historian
Documentaries -

"The Real Treasure Island"
- "Charlie Chan & the Zodiac"
• Disc 4: CHARLIE CHAN IN CITY IN DARKNESS
- Behind the Scenes - "The Making of CHARLIE CHAN IN CITY IN DARKNESS"
- Documentary - "Writing Chan: Robert Ellis & Helen Logan"
Trailers: Trailer


DVD Release Date: February 12th, 2008

4 standard Keep Cases inside a cardboard box
Chapters: 20 each

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: Although the main features of this boxset are housed in individual keep cases (see images below) they are not sold separately at this time and can only be obtained in the Fox Charlie Chan Collection Volume 4 Boxset. They have been transferred in the NTSC standard, coded for Region 1 with original mono audio or optional stereo with removable subtitles in English, French or Spanish. All are single layered except Charlie Chan in Honolulu which is dual layered.

Image: These transfers look the best of all the Fox Chan Series in my opinion. Fabulous contrast and greyscale with only hints of noise (more in darker scenes). Digital restoration (Fox spent over $2 million restoring all of their Chan and Mr. Moto films) greatly appears to have benefited the appearance of these four Toler-Chan films. Even though only 1 of the 4 are dual-layered they still look exceptionally strong considering their age. I continued my love affair with this vintage cinema. The films in this boxset continue to export the charismatic Chan philosophy - and Toler does a marvelous job replacing Warner Oland.   

Audio - Decent with very minimal hiss (no dropouts or pops) and overall dialogue remains consistent and clear. I sampled both the mono and stereo with only a marginal difference - both exported the dialogue and track of the 4 films competently. Comparatively speaking it may be a at about the same level as the video quality - it is usually that strong.

Extras - Only one commentary in this package Ken Hanke - Film Critic; John Cork - Film Historian on Treasure Island. There is also some very complete featurettes and documentaries - any level of fan will be content. There are also stills galleries and restoration comparisons. Excellent job Fox - some real detail and passion went into the supplements.

Well, with the Warner Oland cycle completed after Vol. 3 this 'introduction' to Toler continues the same enjoyable retreats from the troubles of our modern world. I LOVED them all and sank quickly and deeply into my zone of comfort-ability while watching and, I, as usual, only wish there were more films in the package. Tack onto the great films, incredible looking image and strong audio - extensive supplements. This is an easy must-own for fans of Chan, the series or just vintage cinema at its finest.    

Gary W. Tooze



DVD Menus


Extras: Features


 

Keep Case Cover

 

 

 

Screen Captures

 

Charlie Chan in Honolulu (1938)


Starring Sidney Toler, Phyllis Brooks, Victor Sen Yung, Eddie Collins and John 'Dusty' King

 

Director: H. Bruce Humberstone

 

 

 


Keep Case Cover

 

 

 

Screen Captures

 

Charlie Chan in Reno (1939)


Starring  Sidney Toler, Ricardo Cortez, Phyllis Brooks, Slim Summerville, Kane Richmond and Victor Sen Yung

Director: Norman Foster

 

 


Keep Case Cover

 

 

 

Screen Captures

 

Charlie Chan at Treasure Island (1939)


Starring Sidney Toler, Victor Sen Yung, Cesar Romero, Douglas Fowley and Pauline Moore

Director: Norman Foster

 

 


Keep Case Cover

 

 

 

Screen Captures

 

Charlie Chan in City in Darkness (1939)


Starring Sidney Toler, Lynn Bari, Richard Clarke, Harold Huber, Pedro de Cordoba and Dorothy Tree

Director: Herbert I. Leeds

 

 

DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Recommend:

DVDBeaver whole-heartedly recommend all five of the Fox Charlie Chan Boxsets:

 

Distribution 20th Century Fox - Region 1 - NTSC




 

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