Shanghai Express 1932

Amazon Instant Video

(25) IMDb 7.5/10

Passengers on the Shanghai Express are concerned that the notorious Shanghai Lil is on board. A British Army doctor knew her before she became a 'coaster' - a woman who lives by her wits. When guerrillas stop the train he's taken hostage. Lil saves him but can she convince him she hasn't changed?

Starring:
Marlene Dietrich,Clive Brook
Runtime:
1 hour, 18 minutes

Available to watch on supported devices.

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Product Details

Genres Action & Adventure, Romance
Director Josef Von Sternberg
Starring Marlene Dietrich, Clive Brook
Supporting actors Anna May Wong, Warner Oland & Eugene Pallette
Studio Echelon
BBFC rating Parental Guidance
Rental rights 48 hour viewing period. Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Karen L. on 8 April 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Shanghai Express is a gorgeous film. If you like films of the 1930s, this one is a must-have. The actors and the locales are beautiful and exotic. The lead actors have real chemistry and the cast of supporting characters,played by the greatest character star actors of the '30s, is wonderful. All are interesting, engaging and fun to watch. The beautiful lighting is of major importance in creating the ambiance all through the film. The costumes, of their period, are lovely. The setting is wartime in China and the director, Joseph von Sternberg, while concentrating on the romance, still manages to convey wartime atmosphere without putting much overt blood and violence on the screen. Aside from the reunion and rekindling of the romance between Dietrich and handsome Clive Brook, there are sensitively told stories of the role racism played in the lives of two of the characters played by Anna May Wong and Warner Oland. The only aspect of the film which might be problematic for 21st century viewers is the very stagy acting. But I love it. Shanghai Express is one of my all-time favorite films. In the US and Canada you must have an all-region DVD player to watch this. I bought one to watch this and other great films only available in non-North American formats.
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92 of 94 people found the following review helpful By AlanMusicMan TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 30 May 2007
Format: DVD
So that you know what great value for money this set really is, here's a list of movies contained in this box set.

I can understand why you might be wary of spending your hard earned cash on this box set when Amazon have unaccountably failed to list the movies it contains... odd since the Amazon DVD rental system provides a complete list - so the info is in Amazon's databases somewhere...c'mon Amazon I thought you were slicker than that!

Anyway, here's the list of the 6 movies contained in this box set:

The Lady is Willing,

Shanghai Express (highly recommended by me, see those breathtaking railway station sets!)

Destry Resides Again

A Foreign Affair

Blonde Venus

The Devil is a Woman.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By B. Brecht Jr. on 14 Feb. 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
As a fan of Marlene Dietrich, I felt this movie was by the best of her early American releases and collaborations with director Josef von Sternberg. The acting and direction are flawless and the whole compact timeframe of just 78 minutes made the whole storyline rattle along at a decent pace for the era the film was made in.

The only downside I would say is that there are no DVD extras but at such a low price, it doesn't really matter. I would highly recommend this wonderful little film to anybody who wishes to find out more about either Marlene Dietrich or Josef von Sternberg. (And also to anyone who wishes to find out how America percieved China in the early 1930s!)
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Mabel Presley on 7 Aug. 2009
Format: DVD
As a youngster I rarely saw Marlene Dietrich movies on the TV probably because she was German and there was still anti German feeling in the UK at that time or maybe because the USA kept these fabulous movies to themselves. These movies are worth watching just for the photography and gowns.The stories must have been shocking in their day but with the message to the audience that prejudice and judgement are destructive thought processes.
I didnt know what to expect of Miss Dietrich's performances what I received was mesmerising. What a beautiful woman and what watchable performances. Stunning and worth every penny
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Robert Amsel on 20 Aug. 2011
Format: DVD
Although Universal has released this handsome studio print of Shanghai Express (1932) on DVD in the U.K., Europe and Australia, you're very fortunate since they've never released a Region 1 DVD in the U.S. This is an exquisite film. Marlene has never been more beautiful as a woman of dubious reputation who will go to any extreme to protect the man she loves, even if the little reputation she has takes a direct hit as a result. Though melodramatic in a fun way, the direction by Von Sternberg is magnificent in this tale of the Chinese Civil War and an-ill fated train trip to Shanghai. Rich with texture and contrast, the film features Marlene Dietrich at her most sultry (and beautifully dressed and coiffed), ably assisted by Anna May Wong at HER must sultry. Two bombshells in one movie! How great is that? What's more, out of the many thousands of movies I've watched over the years, this one has my all-time favorite movie quotation -- from Marlene: "It took more than one man to change my name to Shanghai Lily."
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Julian Hughes on 11 April 2011
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I liked this film a lot. First of all it looks fantastic, and it's easy to see why it won an Oscar for Best Cinematography. It's also easy to see how it got nominated for Best Picture and Best Director. It's direct, witty and well paced as well as being tense and deadly serious in places. Some of the characters at first seem present mostly in order to be mocked, but as the film develops we find that they aren't one dimensional at all. Marlene Dietrich and Anna May Wong are completely perfect as the two very glamourous, worldly and sometimes ruthless women. I was surprised to find out that the sinister Mr Chang is played by a Swedish actor. He looks the part and had me fooled. If you've watched The Bitter Tea of General Yen (1933) you'll have seen another Swede (Nils Asther) quite convincingly play a Chinese villain in a pre-code US movie...very odd. Perhaps this is a mystery that Wallander could solve.

The picture quality isn't the best, with a lot of grain and noise and some scratches etc. but the movie is so absorbing that it didn't matter too much.
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