Watching 1939: Charlie Chan in Reno (1939)

In 2011, I announced I was trying to see every film released in 1939. This new series chronicles films released in 1939 as I watch them. As we start out this blog feature, this section may become more concrete as I search for a common thread that runs throughout each film of the year. Right now, that’s difficult. 

1939 film: 
Charlie Chan in Reno (1939)

Release date: 
May 31, 1939

Cast: 
Sidney Toler, Ricardo Cortez, Phyllis Brooks, Slim Summerville, Kane Richmond, Pauline Moore, Kay Linaker, Louise Henry, Victor Sen Yung (billed as Sen Yung), Charles D. Brown, Iris Wong, Robert Lowery, Virginia Sale (uncredited)

Studio: 
20th Century Fox

Director: 
Norman Foster

Plot:
Mary Whitman (Moore) heads to Reno for a divorce and stays in a hotel for women waiting on their divorce run by Vivian Wells (Brooks) and Dr. Ainsley (Cortez). Upon arrival, Mary encounters Jeanne Bently (Henry), who has broken up Mary’s marriage and will be marrying her ex-husband. That night, Jeanne is found dead, and Mary is accused. Mary’s soon-to-be ex-husband Curtis (Richmond) calls their friend detective Charlie Chan (Toler) to help investigate the case.

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