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Charlie Chan at the Olympics

G 1937 1h 11m Mystery & Thriller List
Reviews 58% Audience Score 50+ Ratings
The detective (Warner Oland) catches spies by reading lips long-distance at the 1936 Berlin Games. Read More Read Less

Critics Reviews

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Dennis Schwartz Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews This adventure story features some actual footage of the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Rated: C+ Aug 15, 2001 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

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andy f This one is a lot of fun and one of the very best Charlie Chan movies. An early appearance from number 2 son is a welcome surprise and number 1 is on form too! Rated 4 out of 5 stars 03/30/23 Full Review Audience Member Chan's Number One son is a participant in the American swimming team during the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Meanwhile, Chan is in Hawaii with a toddler son, also interested in being a detective, though they are on a fishing trip. But they soon get mixed up when a remote-controlled (full-sized) airplane crashes, its pilot murdered, and its top secret control circuit stolen from it. It winds up being taken to Europe and Chan and company follow it. Members of the Olympics also get involved. There are several subplots involving intrigues among the Olympic team, which involve Number One son and muddy the chase of the stolen robot-who is involved, and who can possibly be guilty. The very efficient German police are involved, but obviously foreign spies are after the device-who to trust? Historical note: In 1937, there was still uncertainty as to who Hitler was and what he intended, not everyone seeing him then as evil-he was even named Time magazine's Man Of The Year shortly before. Also, Chan did ride the Hindenburg zeppelin, and you see a brief shot of it, swastika included, and Jesse Owens and his Olympic victory did get shown in the movie. Even Charles Lindbergh went to Germany to admire how Hitler brought it back to life. It would not be until the 1938 Kristallnacht that the world would unmistakably discover the true nature of Hitler's regime. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/22/23 Full Review Audience Member Warner Oland as Charlie Chan. This time he is after spies and pursues them to Berlin at the time of the 1936 Olympics. A more than usually complicated story with two sets of villains for Chan to defeat. Two Chan sons "help" their father in this exploit. Good B picture entertainment. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/13/23 Full Review Audience Member He's at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, in fact, and surprisingly there is no mention of Nazism anywhere in the film, even though Charlie Chan rides the Hindenberg across the Atlantic to get there and German police work hand-in-hand with him, often trumpeting their well-known efficiency. Surprisingly, ethnic stereotypes are pretty mild in this film; Chan himself, played by Swede Warner Oland, is barely Asian at all, except for his unrecognizable accent and fortune cookie witticisms. And his son, Lee, played by Keye Luke, is thoroughly All-American (even winning a gold medal swimming for the USA at the end of the picture -- sorry for the spoiler). Other Charlie Chan films featuring his servant Birmingham seem a bit more racist (as I recall). The main focus here, of course, is the mystery -- someone has murdered in order to steal a top-secret macguffin that could be used for military purposes. There is a long list of suspects, some easily confused, but Charlie does manage to save the day. Reputedly one of the better films in the series and that could be true. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/04/23 Full Review Audience Member "Truth like football, receive many kicks before reaching goal."--Sports, Spies, and Murder!! Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/22/23 Full Review Audience Member 1.5: Hmm. I was prompted to watch these by an article in The New Yorker that I read a year or two ago. I wasn't expecting them to be outstanding, but I was expecting something better than this. I have now seen essentially every Charlie Chan film, or at least all that were made between 1931 and 1947 (29 films). What struck me most is that these really have more in common with a television show than a feature film. Each film is essentially the same except for the "location." I guess it makes sense as they serve essentially the same purpose. One can essentially watch every film on auto-pilot comfortable in the knowledge that one knows exactly which characters will pop up and that everything will be satisfactorily resolved in the end. They are "C" picture at best. Sidney Toler is pretty good; Warner Toland is somewhat acceptable; and the other two one picture no-names are either inconsequential or awful. It is rather ludicrous that they didn't allow an actual Asian actor to play the role, but the portrayal of African-American's is much more heinous. They certainly pale in comparison to just about every other detective picture/TV series I've ever seen. None of the films rate an individual review so this will have to suffice for all 29. Rated 1.5 out of 5 stars 02/14/23 Full Review Read all reviews
Charlie Chan at the Olympics

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Movie Info

Synopsis The detective (Warner Oland) catches spies by reading lips long-distance at the 1936 Berlin Games.
H. Bruce Humberstone
John Stone
Mystery & Thriller
Original Language
Release Date (DVD)
Dec 5, 2006
1h 11m