Sunday, 2 May 2010


Thank You Mr. Moto 1937 US
Directed by Norman Foster
20th Century Fox DVD Region 1

Within the first 10 minutes of 20th Century Fox’s second entry into the Moto series, Thank You Mr. Moto, the title character has already viciously stabbed a man to death (he was attacked himself but the response was quite gratuitious) and buried his victim so nobody will know about it. Within another ten minutes he has stabbed to death another would be villain with some, off screen this time, innapropriately judged violence. As I said in my review of the previous Mr. Moto film... this guy is NOT Charlie Chan!

This entertaining romp through Hollywoodland studio China sees Mr. Moto on the trail of the fourth of a set of seven ancient Chinese sacred scrolls which, when placed together, will reveal the exact location of the tomb of Genghis Khan. As the viewer will soon realise, in his quest to track down the fourth scroll, and being as he is already in possession of the seventh scroll and has access to the other five, the film is actually in no way about finding the lost treasures of Genghis Khan. It is about the skullduggery and villainous shenanigans of various “interested groups” trying to obtain the scrolls and the knowledge they hold for their own purposes.

In this story, Mr. Moto is aided and abetted by various actors, half of who already played different characters in the previous film... Hollywood B-movies seemed to do a lot of that in the thirties and forties. John Carradine also turns up as a short lived, shady art dealer... looking every bit as shifty as he did when he went on to those Universal horror movies over the next decade.

The fist fight at the end of this movie... goes one step further in it’s enthusiastic execution than the previous movie did. This time we are in definitive Republic serial mode. Almost every bit of furniture in the room, plus the odd bottle, gets chucked or wasted in some fashion.

Another enjoyable Moto adventure but still not as well written as some of the other genre B-movies of the time.

1 comment: