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  • Tcm Spotlight: Charlie Chan Collection [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
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Tcm Spotlight: Charlie Chan Collection [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

3 customer reviews

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Region 1 encoding. (requires a North American or multi-region DVD player and NTSC compatible TV. More about DVD formats)
Note: you may purchase only one copy of this product. New Region 1 DVDs are dispatched from the USA or Canada and you may be required to pay import duties and taxes on them (click here for details) Please expect a delivery time of 5-7 days.

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Product details

  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Classification: Unrated (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00383XZP8
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 143,735 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Customer Reviews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Trevor Willsmer HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on 27 Nov. 2011
After Fox's excellent Region 1 boxed sets of their Warner Oland and Sidney Toler films and MGM/UA's six-film Charlie Chan - Chanthology [DVD], TCM's set of four later Monogram Chan films is a slightly curious compilation, including three Sidney Toler films and Roland Winters' debut in the role, but skipping over two more Toler films, The Red Dragon and Shadows Over Chinatown, which - like Winters last five films in the series - remain unreleased on home video, making a chronological boxed set (or even a single boxed set for the seven remaining films) highly unlikely. The films themselves are typical of the latter days at Monogram, more product to be churned out fast and cheap than inspired, though it does get off to a good start...

"Being a detective is an ugly trade."
"Ugliest trade sometimes have moment of joy. Even gravedigger know some for whom he would do his work with extreme pleasure."

Dark Alibi seems like everyone at Monogram made a conscious decision to try to get the Charlie Chan series back on track rather than just churning them out. After his largely anonymous and confused earlier Chan film The Shanghai Cobra, director Phil Karlson suddenly raises his game with some excellent visuals, aided by decent production values and a much more memorable array of suspects and dodgy characters than the usual undistinguished bunch that was the usual stock in trade at the studio. The plot's not bad either, with Charlie having only nine days to prove an ex-con who has gone straight for years is not guilty of a murder and bank robbery.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Simon Butler on 9 Jan. 2011
Anyone who likes the old Charlie Chan adventures will be thrilled with this Region 1 boxset-it includes perfect prints of 'Dark Alibi','Dangerous Money', 'The Trap' & 'The Chinese Ring'. First three star Sidney Toler as Chan-final one stars Roland Winters. The great Mantan Moreland stars as sidekick Birmingham Brown in 3 of them. These are hour long adventures-perfect for a rainy Sunday afternoon. If you love the old black & white thrillers they made in the 40s you will adore this, if you don't it's probably not for you.
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One of the most beautiful collection of Charlie Chan, one of the super detectives of all times.
Glad to have found it for a good price, with shipping oversea.
Thanks!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 155 reviews
82 of 86 people found the following review helpful
Chantastic! 29 Mar. 2010
By S. Ward - Published on Amazon.com
Before I begin, I should state that this is a pre-release review - which,at the time of typing, I suspect also applies to all the other reviews currently attributed to this release on here. With this in mind, I can't pass comment on the quality of the print transfer or whether or not there is Closed Captioning. However, with regards to the films themselves, I've seen two of the titles released in this collection, these being Dark Alibi and The Trap. The latter movie is simply woeful and not even a decent entry in the Monogram series from which all the movies on here derive - this was Toler's swansong playing Chan and, at the time, he was gravely ill with little time remaining - naturally this has an adverse effect on his performance. Dark Alibi, is, however, an entertaining yarn and ranks right up there with any title released on the other Monogram DVD collection i.e 'The Chanthology'. I've only ever seen one Roland Winters Chan movie and that was 'The Goldeneye' (not on this set) - it'll be interesting to reacquaint myself with his portrayal of the character by watching his first performance in 'The Chinese Ring' which is the last title included within this release. Its interesting to note that, with this set, there are still 7 Chan movies still awaiting release on DVD - 5 Roland Winters titles and 2 Sidney Toler - will these ever see the light of day, well, we can only hope....5 star rating given simply because I love these films, even the bad ones (and The Trap is pretty bad) - I'll update once I'm in actual receipt of the product and will then pass comment on print quality and the like.

UPDATE: - I'm now in receipt of this set - print wise, the quality of the films is pretty good, 'The Chinese Ring' is the best (although there are a few brief scenes where remastering has been noticeably neglected). On the flip side, 'The Trap' displays signs of actual print damage. I have a question regarding 'The Trap' that I'd really liked answered - 37 seconds into this film, just as the titles are rolling in front of a backdrop of a beach, something jumps out from the bottom right of the screen for literally a split second. I've paused my DVD and played in slow motion but to no avail! The more I look at this the more alien like it seems! Would someone please confirm what on earth this is - I'm guessing this is a blooper as there seems to be little logic behind its appearance! That aside, each of these movies are just over an hour in length - sadly, these films are light years behind the Twentieth Century Fox films and therefore I'd recommend these titles to die hard Chan fans only. If you're new to the series therefore, please do not judge the series on the offerings of this set. Roland Winters provides a different slant on the character, but frankly, to me, he lacks any believability in the role - his interpretation of Chan is more akin to Peter Sellers' portrayal of Inspector Clouseau - considering Chan is not a comedic character, this is not a compliment. There are no extras whatsoever and with 4 discs in a fold out cardboard case, one would be forgiven for thinking this is rather an expensive set for what you get. However, I still want to see the last 7 titles on an official DVD release and prey that these are released in one set as opposed to the likely two. Maybe the next set could have 4 discs with two films on 3 discs and 1 disc with just the one movie AND some extras. I still rate this 5 stars as I consider the print quality to be better than expected and the presentation case is fairly good too.
106 of 116 people found the following review helpful
MORE MONOGRAM CHAN FILMS 21 Feb. 2010
By Ghoulchick - Published on Amazon.com
Warner is stepping up to the plate, giving us Chan fans a great set with four of the Monogram Studio Chan films never released on DVD. Yes DVD not DVD-R!

The films in this collection are:

Dark Alibi (1946)
Dangerous Money (1946)
The Trap (1946)
The Chinese Ring (1947) (THIS MOVIE STARS ROLAND WINTERS AS CHAN)

Needless to say, I'm DARNED EXCITED! Personally, I think it is a miracle that Warner is getting this set out. 2010 was a big dissapointment overall for classic movie releases. So this is a good thing. In the words of Charle Chan....thank you...so much.
33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
MUCH BETTER SET THAN SUGGESTED BY HARSH REVIEWS 8 Sept. 2010
By Keith L. Oldham - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I RECENTLY PURCHASED THIS SET AS A GIFT AND IF THE RECIPIENT HAD NOT WANTED TO OWN
ALL OF THE CHAN FILMS, I WOULD HAVE THOUGHT TWICE ABOUT PURCHASING THIS SET AFTER
READING SOME OF THE HARSH COMMENTS IN REVIEWS OF IT. I EVEN FOREWARNED MY FRIEND PRIOR TO WATCHING THE DVDS WITH HIM. UPON VIEWING THEM, WE BOTH AGREED THAT WE ENJOYED ALL OF THE FILMS AND LOOK FORWARD TO THE REMAINING UNRELEASED TITLES. THE QUALITY OF THE PRINTS IS EXCELLENT AND WE EVEN THOUGHT THEY WERE PACKAGED NICELY. I EXPECTED TO BE VERY DISSAPOINTED WITH THE LAST ENTRY AND FIRST FOR ROLAND WINTERS BUT IT WAS A PLEASANT SURPRISE. IT DOES TAKE SOME ADJUSTMENT TO WATCH SOMEONE DIFFERENT AFTER WATCHING THE TOLER ENTRIES BUT YOU DO GET USED TO IT, AND THE PRODUCTION VALUES AND CAST IS EXCELLENT. THE LAST ENTRY FOR MR. TOLER WAS AGAIN MUCH BETTER THAN THE REVIEWS SUGGESTED. I DON'T REVIEW VERY MANY PURCHASES BUT I FELT COMPELLED TO DEFEND THIS SET AFTER ACTUALLY WATCHING IT.
IT WAS WORTH BUYING AND WE HOPE THE REMAINDER OF THE CHAN FILMS WILL BE OFFERED,
HOPEFULLY SOONER THAN LATER.
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Nice Set for CHARLIE CHAN Collectors! 8 Oct. 2010
By LEONARD J. KOHL - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I have been trying for years to figure out who owns what as far as the CHARLIE CHAN films are concerned. Several of the Fox CHAN films showed up on TV under a Warner Bros./7 Arts package. I've also heard that Leo Gutman, Inc. owned the rights to the later Monogram films. Somehow, THE BLACK CAMEL was leased or bought by Warner Bros. for years. (Maybe for a possible remake?)Fortunately, nowadays things seem fairly clear. Fox has now retained the rights of all of the CHARLIE CHAN films they originally produced. MGM/UA apparently owns the first 6 CHAN Monogram films, and from purchasing the Allied Artists film library, Warner Bros. owns the remainder of the CHAN Monograms from 1946 to the end of the series. I just wanted to clear that up as several posters here seem to be confused as to which studio owns what.

It seems to some that Warner Home Video and TCM has "scraped the bottom of the barrel" in putting these four Monogram CHARLIE CHAN films out on DVD. In a way, they have, but they've done their best to restore these films, which I've heard have been in sad shape for years. Even as a youngster, several of the Monogram CHARLIE CHAN films looked choppy, dupey and grimy from the TV prints I saw in Chicago, and a number of them were from foreign "Pathe' Pictures, Ltd." prints. So, we gotta give Warners and TCM kudos for getting the films in as good a shape as possible for DVD.

For my money, DARK ALIBI is probably the best of the post-1945 CHARLIE CHAN films. DANGEROUS MONEY and THE TRAP are the worst of the Sidney Toler films. Author Ken Hanke (CHARLIE CHAN AT THE MOVIES) likes the Roland Winters version of "Charlie Chan" far more than I do, so I'm sure he's happy that a good copy of THE CHINESE RING is avialable on DVD at last. I do agree with Mr. Hanke that the Monogram CHARLIE CHAN movies should be judged by what Monogram Pictures was capable of putting out at the time, given the budgets and shooting times the cast and crew had to work with. Compared with the average low-budget mystery film from Monogram and other studios of their ilk, the CHARLIE CHAN series is better than average in comparison. Nowhere near as good as the productions done earlier at 20th Century-Fox, but Ken Hanke argues that the Monograms can't and shouldn't be judged by the earlier CHAN productions made at Fox.

It's unfortunate that in today's economy, studios now seldom put out collections with the "bells and whistles" that collectors love: mini documentaries on the making of these films, biographies on the cast, etc., commentaries by historians, etc. If any set of CHARLIE CHAN films needs "extras" the Monogram series is it. These films have been maligned and unfairly judged over the years and it would be refreshing to hear CHARLIE CHAN experts like Ken Hanke, Howard Berlin, etc. or historians expert on Monogram (Ted Okuda for THE MONOGRAM CHECKLIST comes to mind, or Mike Price, who wrote an excellent biography on Mantan Moreland, MANTAN THE FUNNY MAN) to properly explain how these films were made, and why they still can be entertaining, more than 60 years later! Maybe things will be better when TCM/Warners puts out - I hope - additional sets and these "extras" can be included! Again, I'm hoping the sales will be good enough for TCM/Warner to put the rest of the Monogram CHARLIE CHAN films out on DVD.
51 of 59 people found the following review helpful
CC TTM 23 Feb. 2010
By Charles Thrasher - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This is Great......about Time...what about Tolers last 2 - Shadows over Chinatown and The Red Dragon.....they are the only ones left not on DVD
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