Phantom of Chinatown (1940) - full transcript

In the middle of a pictorial lecture on his recent expedition to the Mongolian Desert, Dr. John Benton the famous explorer, drinks from the water bottle on his lecture table, collapses and dies. His last words "Eternal Fire" are the only clue Chinese detective Jimmy Wong and Captain Street of the police department have to work on. Win Lee, Benton's secretary, reveals the doctor's dying words refer to a scroll which tells the location of rich oil deposits. Wong and Street then begin the search for the killer among Benton's associates.

And word of our needs preceded us.

And some of the camel trainers
arriving at our base camp.

Our days were filled with protests
of the patient beasts

who seemed to sense the dangerous
journey before them.

At this time may I express my appreciation
to the one man whose patience, sympathy

and understanding more than anyone else
made our expedition possible.

Ladies and gentlemen, Dr. Norman Wilkes,
the President of Southern University.

The camel is like most patient
souls more than a little stubborn.

And the packing developed into
an endurance contest between the beasts

and the attendants.

It's too bad this young man
wasn't a few years older.

I'm sure he could have solved
the entire problem.

Ha ha ha ha.

You laugh at these people.
Ladies and gentlemen, bear in mind
that at one time in history

and again, just come,
they ruled the world.

And that reminds me
of another unsung hero,
a man whose industry and devotion

were responsible for the photographic
record of our journey.

Charlie Frasier, our cameraman.

But at last,
even the camels were subdued

and we started on our trek.

A journey, this one cover
the tomb of an emperor

and bring to light
one of Earth's great secrets.

Followed days of monotonous sameness,

as we plotted onward into the desert,

broken only by occasional visits of our plane,
which faithfully threw along our route,

delivering mail, needed supplies
and bringing back our sick and injured.

We have a signal
arranged to tell them when we want it.

You must realize
that this is more than a travelogue.

We have all the elements of drama
promised to ward, obstacles to overcome,

even a suggestion of romance, which
explains the frequent trips of our airplane.

My daughter Louise was with the caravan

and Tommy Dean was piloting the plane.

Our objective was the hitherto
undiscovered country across the mountains.

As we started to climb,
the temperature dropped precipitously

until we were in the snow country.

As you can see, by the way,
the camels are floundering.

This was not the easiest part
of our journey.

But at last the summit was reached

and we began to step toward
our objectives.

I promised you all an interesting

Here it is.

The discovery of the Emperor's tomb,

whose whereabouts had
remained a mystery for centuries.

The shock of discovery was too much
for sudden realization.

After the hardships of our journey, but
gradually the enormity of our find possessed us.

We called each other in our excitement

and rushed into the tomb.


Here it is. We found it.

Well, my camera.

I ought to be photographing this.

We must find a crypt.

Oh, my fault, sir.

- Did you find anything?
- Yes, yes. The sarcophagus in there.

Louise, tell me, Frasier,

- what is it?
- I found it. The sarcophagus.

In here. In here.

Come on, I'll try to hold it.

Our Chinese bears had warned us
of a curse on the tomb.

I can't say this to that.

I only know that our troubles began
from that moment.

A violent windstorm was headed upon us,
threatening our camp.

We all worked hard to combat the elements,

buoyed by the success of our expedition.

Mason, our copilot,
seemed very much moved.

He started out to revisit the tomb.

He must have got lost in the treacherous
storm, but by morning he had not returned.

The wind increased in violence.

The searching party returned without Mason.

I would like to take this opportunity
to pay tribute to Mason,

this gallant member of our party who
did so much to help achieve our success.

My Chinese backers became fear stricken
as the storm grew less.

I was faced with a horrible decision

to wait and endanger
the lives of our whole party

or press on.

I decided on the latter course.

It was only when I began the difficult
task of translating the scroll

that I really found out the
magnitude of our discovery.

The more I studied its contents,

more I realized that I...


Turn on the light.

- What happened? Break?
- Looks like...

- What's wrong, Louise?
- I don't know, Jimmy.

Something's happened to father.

I'm sorry you didn't hear to see
what there was at the lecture,

Jimmy. Father will be disappointed.

My only excuse is that I misunderstood
the time.

Perhaps we can run the pictures again.

I hope so.

Jimmy was one of dad's favorite pupils.

I never could get much interested
in archeology.

Could you then fly a plane.

And after all, there are many reasons
for wanting to go on an archeological

trip to China.

Here's the complete camera report.

I've arranged to store the film.

Are you listening to me?

Yes. Yes, of course.
Thank you.

I wish they'd hurry.

Doctor's been up there a long time.

No, don't worry.

Your dad been under a strain.

The work and study preparing for
the lecture been too much for him.

- Miss Louise? - Yes.
- Do I want it upstairs?

Of course.
Excuse me.

The police.


- Police.
- This way, sir.

See if nobody leaves here.

- What's all the excitement about?
- I don't know, but it must be serious.

That was captain Street
of the Homicide Squad.

- Homicide?
- Yes.

- That means a doctor but...
- I'm afraid so.

You can't keep murder
out of the newspapers.

- We have no proof that he was murdered.
- Your own doctor says he was poisoned.

You tell me he was stricken during the lecture.
Doesn't look like suicide to me.

What I want to know is who had
the brilliant idea of removing the body?

I did.
It wasn't the body.

It was my very dear friend, Dr. Benton.

We all supposed
that you'd collapsed from all the work.

It's been inhuman to have left
him on the floor.

but it might have helped me a little.

I'm supposed to photograph a body
at the scene of the crime.

I got work to do.
Prints, clothes, routine to go through.

Perhaps this wasn't a routine crime.

- Who are you?
- My name is Wong. James Lee Wong.

How do you fit into this?

Dr. Benton had just returned
from the interior of China.

- I'm Chinese.
- Are you Chinese, too? - Yes, sir.

- Two of you worked together?
- I never saw her until an hour ago.

You sent for me, sir?

Oh, yeah.
What did Dr. Benton have for lunch?

First he asked for the meuniere potatoes
with vegetables, peas and then coffee.

That's fine.

Everybody else had the same thing?

Everybody except Miss Win Len.

Would she have chop suet?

No, sir. She had a cup of coffee
and a piece of apple pie.

She had the same lunch
every day for a month.

- You mean she eats here all the time?
- She lives here.

As I should say,
was Dr. Benton secretary.

All right, all right, all right.
What do the rest of you do?

- I was airplane pilot on the expedition.
- And I was the cameraman.

I ran the projection
machine at the lecture.

- What's your racket?
- Research.

Who else was with him at the lecture?

The doctor's daughter,
whom you met upstairs,

the trustees the university,
and a few friends.

- Who was with him when he died?
- Jonas and I. - Did he say anything?

- Research.
- Oh, as a matter of fact, he did.

Of course, I didn't mention it before
because it didn't make sense.

- Come on, what do you say?
- Well, we could hardly hear him.

It was something about the eternal fire
and wind lane.

- Well, what do you know about this?
- Why? Nothing at all.

I have no idea what the doctor meant.

When Dr. Benton phoned me, he hinted
at something important he had found.

- There was a scroll.
- Did you help him translate it?

No. Dr. Benton wouldn't let anyone see it.

Wait a minute. Wait a minute.
Scroll, eternal fire, translate.

- What is all this?
- Well, the doctor was telling us

about finding an ancient scroll
in the tomb of a Ming Emperor.

- Where is it now?
- In the safe.

- Who has the combination?
- Dr. Benton and Dr. Wilkes.

Of course,
being president of the college,

I have the combinations
of every safe on the campus.

- Come on, come on. Let's open it.
- Right.

Why there's nothing in there?

- The scrolls gone.
- Yeah. Yeah, and so's my patience.

Now, listen, I'm sick of scrolls,
translations, eternal fires.

I'm going to have just a slight
dash of murder mystery.

Police headquarters.


Hello, this Street speaking.

I want you to send some men up
to room number four, lecture

room number four
at the Southern University.

That's right. Doc Benton's place. Yeah.

You know, prints, photographs, the works.


Chinese exchange, please.

Chinese exchange.

Wong, Lee James.

Wong, Lee James.


Fariner. This was Jonas,
he says there's a Chinese name.

- Wong sticking his nose.
- Jonas must have been scared.

The house is full of cops
and he takes a chance on phoning us.

Well, I only hope our Jonas doesn't
turn out to be our Jonas.

Yeah. Certain people would give a lot.

To know that you didn't
die in that Chinese desert.

Well, yeah.

- I wonder who he's working for.
- Well, you'll figure that out.

- Good evening, Foo.
- Late again, huh?

You late, me no late.
You're always late.

Fix breakfast? No breakfast?

Fix the lunch? You know lunch?

How do you find killer?

You know, can't find whom.

How you know I look all the semi killer.

You knew Dr. Benton.

Dr. Benton die. I let the paper.

Nice going.

Maybe I ought to let you hunt killer
while I stay home and cook.

You cook? Huh.

- Foy.
- Foo my name, not Foy name, Foo.

Well, it may be Foo in China,
but in America it's Foy.

- How Dr. Benton killed?
- Poison.

What kind poison?

Nobody knows until the police
surgeon performs an autopsy.


Maybe Dr. Benton was bad cook.

What's the matter, you play games?

No. There's something wrong
with these pictures.

There's nothing wrong with soup.
You eat them.

Hey, that's it.

I've got it.

- Look at what? - I've got,
what's wrong with the pictures?

The water on the picture. Look.

See this picture?
Dr. Benton as he started the lecture.
You see the water on the table?

See this picture of the
lecture room after

Dr. Benton's collapse?
Where's the water?

Not this one. We have a time fight.

Yeah, you found it.

Why didn't I think of that before?

Everybody crazy.

A thousand fingerprints, 25

suspects. Chinese temples,
a missing scroll, an eternal fire.

What a case.


Yeah, doctor.

Yeah. Okay, thanks.

And now
some kind of an alkaloidal poison.

Nobody knows anything about.

Hey, Grady, come here.

What do you think that it?

Maybe it's the eternal fire.

Can't you, to find any other place
the neck?

- He's hurt.
- Hurt?

I'll say I'd like a red lantern. Wong.

Wong, snap out of it. A boy, what happened?

Well, I was searching the ground.
Something hit me.

- You see who hit you?
- No.

What were you looking for?


I don't know how you're mixed up in all
of this, but maybe you got something.

You figured the poison was in the
drinking water all the time, right?

Right. And in the excitement following

Dr. Benton's collapse, the murder threw
the water pitcher glass out the window.

- The window was open during the lecture.
- How do you know.

I opened it. Dr. Benton asked me to.

Whoever hit you on the head
was probably looking for pieces of this.

Yes. He probably found the pitcher
being heavy. It didn't break.

I held that piece of the glass in my hand.

Luckily for you,
it didn't cut your hand off.


You sure you didn't hear or see anyone?

Not exactly.

I did see what appeared to be
a flashlight in the shrubbery.

Now it's your turn.

I saw light in the shrubbery,
hurried over and found

Mr. Wong lying on the ground.

I was doing my best
to revive him when you arrived.

Sure you didn't
hit him on the head in the first place?


But I did hear someone running away.

Oh, a mysterious character
shrouded in darkness.

What we are doing
snooping around the grounds.

I wasn't snooping.

I was on my way here.
You asked me to come.

Oh, yeah.
Yeah, that's right. I did.

In the habit of carrying a flashlight?

Why no.

No, of course not.
It's too simply simple.

How do we even know that's the glass
Dr. Benton drank out of.

We don't, but a simple laboratory.

Yeah, I know all about that.
All right, you two run along.

Thank you, captain. Come on.


take that down to laboratory
and have it tested for poison.

- Where would you be?
- I'll check with you later at the station.

- Can I take you somewhere?
- No, thanks.

I'm due at Doctor Benton's.

So that's good,
you'll have no trouble reaching there.

However, if you're not going to doctor
Benton's, be careful,

you're going to be followed.

- Are you sure, I'm going to be followed?
- We're going to be followed.

- Is that better?
- Much.

Feel like talking?

Of course.

What shall we talk about?

Ancient ones from Chinese temples.

What was on it?

I don't know.

Usually these scrolls are merely a detailed
survey of all the emperor's possessions.

Dr. Benton hinted of something important.

- Did he tell you what it was?
- No.

He said the lecture was the time
and place to reveal it.

Then his discovery may have been
the reason for the murder and the theft.

I don't know.
Merely a museum piece.

- The scroll was very valuable.
- Granted.

But why couldn't it have indicated
the location of some hidden treasure?

Mr. Wong, I believe you've been
reading too many detective stories.

He is following, all right.

I've got to get away.
Why do you help me?

That depends.

I'm not running out.
But there's something I must do.

I can't explain.

You've got to trust me.

Hang on.


- All right. Where's the girl?
- The girl?

You know, you left the lecture hall
with it. Win Len.

Why, captain, have you been
following me?

I've cut out that clown.
And where is she?

- She must have disappeared.
- All right, wise guy.

I got the number of that cab,
and I'm going to have I picked up.

Police headquarters.

Give me homicide.

It's a Street speaking.

Send out an order to have
a taxi cab picked up.

Number five two seven five one one.

That Chinese girl got away.

Win Len. I want her picked up.

Who? Put them on.

Hello, Grady?




Hey, listen,

hold a phone a minute.

I get this.

I'm with this Wong fella.

His address is on Grand Avenue.

I want you to check it.

Send a good man up there to go
over his place with a fine tooth comb.

Yeah, yeah.
I'll keep him busy for an hour.


Well, you were right.

They found poison on that glass corresponds
with the poison in Doc Bennett's stomach.

Sure, must have been potent.

Probably an Oriental vegetable poison.

- When let know about that,
wouldn't she? - Yes.

Or any of the other members
of the expedition.

- They were all in China.
- Yeah. Yeah.

You better take a little ride with me.

- Are you taking me in?
- Why? What do you been doing?

Nothing that you don't know about.

No, no. As a matter of fact,
I want a little help.

I'll have one of my boys
pick your car. Come on.

- How much do I pay?
- Seven, sir.

Thank you very much.

You know, I'm pretty much
of a down to earth cop.

Chinese temples,
internal fires, manuscripts.

A little out of my line.

But you're a Chinese.
What do you think of it?

My countrymen dress
ordinary things in fanciful language.

Eternal fire
may be something down to earth.


Let's see.
There's Win Len and Louise Benton,

although I don't think
she poisoned her own father.

Then there's that Tommy. What's his name?
The Aviator. And Frasier, the cameraman.

I think you and I better get a complete
list of that expedition, don't you?

It would help.
Also, a list of the people at the lecture.

Whoever poisoned
the water was at the lecture.

He couldn't very well take a chance on
that water being tasted by someone else.

He or she.
I mean, I'm not forgetting Win Len.

Whoever did
it sneaked up there in the dark

during the lecture
and put the poison in the water.

Possibly, though
you'd think Win Len would have seen that

she was facing away from the screen,
it's more likely.

More likely
that Win Len fix the whole thing.

- Except for one thing.
- What's that?

Well, in all the murder mysteries
I've read and seen,

the person they throw all the suspicion
on is never the murderer.

Maybe this is one time
they'll cross up the formula.

Oh, that's too much to hope for.

By the way, where's the film
that they ran this afternoon?

Frasier, that cameraman, has it.

- Why?
- Everybody has one advantage on us.

They've heard the lecture
and seen the pictures.

Why don't we take a look?

If nothing else happens, at least
we'll be even with the rest of them.

It's a good idea.
I got an hour to spare.

Might as well spend it at the movies.


Yes, speaking.

- Where?
- The Green Dragon.

But who is it?

Hello? Hello.

Doesn't look like anybody's home.


Hey, look in there.

Pick that light.

Frasier. Come on.


Here, take this.

Thanks for.

What happened?

Well, I got a phone call asking me
to meet

Win Len at the Green Dragon.

I started out,

got suspicious, turned around,
came home,

and the roof fell in on me....

Was it Win Len on the phone?

I thought it was.

- Have a drink?
- No, thanks.

Didn't you see anyone when you came in?

No, it was dark.

Somebody searching the place.

They must have heard us coming.

Got any idea what they were looking for?

No. There's nothing worth taking.

Thanks to you fellows, they didn't
have time to do much damage in here.

Where's the film of the expedition?

I have it right here on this machine.

- I've been working on it.
- That's what we came to see.

My projection
machine is still at the university.

However, I can run it through this movie.

All for you.

We use this for cutting.

Stop and start as you please.

- That's fine, if you don't mind.
- Oh, not at all.

You cut the film yourself?

Oh, sure. It's a one man job.

You photographed the interior
of the tomb?

Well, yeah.

There it is.

Where's the scene
of Dr. Benton finding the scroll?

I haven't got that.

In fact, I didn't know anything about
the scroll until today at the lecture.

We were all kind of excited

and when Dr. Benton yelled that he had found
sarcophagus, when I left the camera and ran

- with the others. - And you and
the others didn't see anything?

So you gave me the duck,
put in a phon, he called a Frasier
and then broke into his house.

That isn't true.
I never telephoned.

Then what are you doing here?

I called for some enlargement that
Dr. Wilkes wanted.

When I arrived, the door was open.

There was someone sitting at the desk.

As I came in,
he turned around with a gun in his hand.

Yeah, tied you up and put you
in the closet.

Why don't you tell us what happened?

You were searching the place,
Frasier caught you and you conked him.

Then tied herself up
and put herself in the closet.

Well, Frasier
didn't tie up and put her in the closet

and then knock himself out. Did you?

Where is he?
Hey, Frasier!

Oh. What are you doing here?

I thought I heard somebody outside.

I know, the mysterious stranger again.

Police headquarters.


Hello, this Street speaking.
Send a crew up to Frasier's house.

- Photographs, fingerprints.
- Footprints, too.

There may be a mysterious stranger
at that.

That's all. Come on.

There was somebody. Listen.

I think we can make it.

I got the license number,
but it's probably a stolen car.

Yeah, we better get out of here
before somebody calls a cop.

Well, it looks like we got the murderer
right where he wants us.

Haven't accomplished much, have we?

We sure haven't. We've been doing all
right till Win Len gave you the slip

We kind of put one over on you, didn't she?

Yeah. Looks like it.

It's quite a story she told.

Wonder what her angle is.

I don't know, but come on up
to my apartment and I'll try to find out.

Oh, it's too late
to find out anything tonight.

Come on up.
Anyway, I'll make you a cup of tea.

What have I got to lose?

Not much to come here.
Is that Charley?

I'm leaving on longer. There'll
be a new diners. I mean, they were.

- What's the matter, Foo?
- Not much on here?

Come here. Got out of our way.
Hold out here.

Wait a minute. Calm down.
Speak English.

This is captain Street.

Excuse me.

Man, look see house. Eye catching.

- What does he look like.
- Big man. Big feet. - Where is he now?

He show you.


- I... I... - Get out.
I hear you, mutton head. Get out!

- One of your men, captain?
- Not as of tomorrow.

Oh, I see.

Good work.

Now, make us some tea, Foo.

Come on, captain.

Oh, sorry about having to send
that man up here, Jimmy.

But you've been so close mouthed.

What is your angle on this case, anyway?

A group of influential Chinese
think the secret of eternal fire

is vital to the defense of China.

You mean that
this eternal fire is really on the level?


Excuse me.

Chinatown exchange, please.

This is James Lee Wong,
revered elder, please.


Only the eyebrows of youth

would have the temerity
to call the beard of age at such an hour.

How great the blessing is,
clear perception.

Welcome, James Lee.

Eternal fire is said.

Not until Dr. Benton's murder is solved.

A daughter of the Moonflower
named Win Len is concerned.

Is she known to the friends of China?

You have added to my already heavy

- load of obligation.
- The eyes of the blind need no ointment.

The sight of the temple
is in the hands of China's enemies.

It is your duty to see that
the secret of eternal fire is not used

against her. Health, happiness

- and enduring spring.
- Sun's to mourn at your grave.

Look, I got enough troubles without having to
worry about figuring out Chinese province.

What about Win Len?

Now, captain, just relax.

We're going to have a little tea, and then

if you'll pick me up in the morning,
I think we can get Win Len to talk.

Why wait a morning?

She won't be going anywhere.

All right, all right. Bring on the tea.

What's all this?

The sarcophagus from the Chinese tomb,
sir, that once contained the body

of a Ming Emperor.

They tell me that a Chinese
archeological expedition is digging up

the body of George Washington
in exchange?

- Sir...
- Well, it gives you a rough idea.

Is Win Len home?

In the library.

- Good morning.
- Hello, Jimmy.

Tommy and I were just leaving.
Any news?

Nothing definite.

- You met captain Street?
- Yes. Hello, captain.

- How do you do? - You remember Tommy
Dean? - Yeah, how are you, Dean?

We don't want to bother you, miss Benton,

but have you thought of anything
that might help us?

No. I've racked my brain, gone over
and over the whole expedition.

How about you, Dean?

At this copilot, Mason, for instance.

Can you tell us anything about him?

Well, he was a peculiar sort of a duck.

Frasier might be able to help you.

He was a very good friend of Mason's.

Well, if either of you think of anything,
let us know.

We will.

You gentlemen are out early this morning.

And never mind that.
Let's get out to business.

- Have you a few moments.
- Of course.

There are a few things
I'd like to discuss with you.

But I've already told you everything
I know.

As Dr. Benton secretary perhaps.

But we hope
you talk in your official capacity.

Wait a minute.

- Remember me.
- Win Len works for the Chinese government.


- Is that true?
- Yes.

You'd better tell us all you know.

I'm sure your country as well as mine,
must want to scroll recovered.

my sympathies follow my heritage.

But after all, I am an American.

The secret must not be used against either

What is this? A spy plot?

Could very easily be. The scroll contained
a clue to the Temple of Eternal Fire.

There was a shrine

where, according to Chinese legend,
there burned an undying column of fire.

For centuries,
this location was never known.

But one thing was clear
from all the stories oil replenished,

the flame oil
seeping through the earth's surface.

There was no doubt
that if this shrine really existed,

it must be the largest
oil deposit in the world.

Well, if that's true,
that scroll is worth a fortune.

That's why my government assigned me
to Dr. Benton.

But I failed.
The thief too clever for me.

Of course. It's too late to prevent
Dr. Benton's death.

But working together, we still may
retrieve the scroll and save other lives.

I'll do all that I can to help.

That's true. What about that
hocus pocus at Frasier's last night?

I don't know.

Honestly, I didn't telephone him.

Well, who did?

Frasier said the call was in Chinese.
Probably from Chinatown.

Wait a minute.
If it was, it can be traced.

The Chinatown
exchange lists subscribers by name.

After all we have to do is find
the operator to call Frasier's house.

Yes, it's all very simple.

Well, come on, let's get busy.

That's all me.
Thank you.

We handle many phone calls each night,
but since we know the approximate time,

it is possible
that one of the girls will remember.

- Rose Petal, you were on duty last night.
- From eight until 12.

- This is Mr. Wong.
- Hello, Jimmy.

Jimmy's brother
and I went to high school together.

Then perhaps we better let
Mr. Wong explain what we want.

Rose, this is Win Len

and this gentleman is captain Street
of the San Francisco Police.

We are trying to trace a call to

a Mr. Frasier, who lives
at the old cabinet piece.

- You know the place?
- Yes, it is

at the upper left hand corner of my board.

Rose means that the phone plugs in
there on the board as she sits facing it.


Do you remember plugging in a call for
there at approximately 8:00 last night?

We better let Rose face the board.

She might remember. Fine.

Yes. There was a call from
Mr. Frasier.

Where did it come from?

I'm sorry.
I can't locate it exactly for you.

The best I can do
is be sure it came from this section.

Oh, that's fine, Rose.

At least you've narrowed it down.
Thank you so much.

You can furnish us a list of the
subscribers whose names are in this area.

- Of course, that's a waterfront.
- Sure.

Then all we got to do is check them all
and find out which one called Frasier
last night.

There are only 12 names.

12 names,
and three of them are female subscribers.

Suppose we leave them to Win Len.

You and I can track down the others.

This is crazy. Just because your
friend Rose Petal has a brainwave,

we have to check up
on every Chinese laundry in town.

The next one is the chop suet parlor.

Maybe you'll feel better
after a little lunch.

- I'll wait for Joe's Steakhouse.
- Here we are, Charley Won.

Welcome, please.
You like chop suet?

- No, I just looking around.
- Charming. You know?

- No, thanks. You here alone?
- Yes, alone.

Very hard on one man.

A wise man understands
the seven virtues of peace.

What is one more stone
to an overloaded donkey?

- Come on.
- There's no harm in this man donkey.

- May I use your phone?
- Sorry, no phone.


I happen to know there's a phone in here.
Where is it? Show it to me. Chop chop.

- No phone.
- No? Wait a minute. See that?

It's pretty, isn't it? That's me.
I'm the law.

If you don't, tell me where that phone is,
you're going to get in plenty of trouble.

Let me talk to him.

- Let me get games in, who new now?
- I put it in 10.

- He could get into tonight.
- I made menu.

Wait a minute. What is all this?

I saw him press that button
and trace the wire to that closet.

- It looks suspicious.
- Yeah.

- Where's the phone?
- Please, no phone.

Charley Won no trouble.

You're going to get in
plenty of trouble. Come on.

- See this wire?
- Yeah.

- My best clothes.
- Shut up.

Looks like a panel.

- Yeah. How do you open it, Charlie?
- I don't know.

Go on bless the junk.

Wait a minute, Jimmy.

After you, Charley.
Get in there.

That's a fine setup.
There goes our killer.

- Did you see that knife?
- Charley Won.

Hey, you!

You going someplace, Charley?

- I was wanna get you next up one.
- Wanna go in?

Nice work, Jimmy.
I was held up.

Come on.
You and me is going to have a little talk.

- Come on! - Look around.
- Never mind that.

your friend Charley Won finally talked.

Would you put that note you sent to him?

A little Chinese
thread about the bones of his ancestors?

Sure worked.

He didn't even want me to leave.

I'll see you too.

Let him wait a while.

What did he have to say?
Who were the two men?

Said he didn't know their names,
Only know him as number one

and number four.

I showed him every picture in the place,
but he didn't recognize any of them.

- Too bad.
- Yeah.

You know, it's a funny thing.

This knife looks exactly
like the one they throw at you

the other night.

- Well, doesn't it?
- Yes.

Might be the same knife.

I beg your pardon.
What is that thing?

A little trinket your men found
when they searched the hideout.

Do you mind laying it down
long enough to listen to me?

Oh, of course not.

I didn't mean to be rude.

It's an interesting piece,
and I was trying to trace it.

- I'm sorry.
- Oh, that's all right.

Only Charley dropped a bombshell,

and I wanted to watch your face
when I sprang it on you.

I'm all face and ears.

he claims you didn't know the two men

in the hideout,
but he did describe a frequent visitor.

- Who was it? - Jonas.
- Jonas?

- The Benton butler?
- That's right.

Let's get going.

- Oh, good evening.
- Good evening.

- Where's Jonas?
- I don't know.

Come to think of it,
I haven't seen him for several hours.

He's probably in his room reading.

- He spent a lot of time there.
- I'll go with the house.

I want to check his room.

- Have any success this afternoon?
- Yes. That's why we want Jonas.

Ever seen anything like that before?

Why? They send you out
the God of vengeance.

I haven't seen him
since you were in China.

- Where did you get?
- In a room that...

- How long since you've seen Jonas?
- He was here at lunch.

- All right. You find him?
- No, sir. No sign up.

So he scrammed.

Okay, send out a description
on the radio and have him picked up.

- That's settled.
- You mean that Jonas killed after Benton?

Sure, but he won't get far away.

I can't believe.



Not a fingerprint or anything.

I still can't understand

how they stuffed them in there
without you knowing about it.

I'm sorry, captain,
but my duty take me all over the house.

Besides, I was working on those phone
subscribers until dinnertime.

And I'm just making noises.

This case has got me daffy, daggers,

scrolls, poison.



You don't say.

All right, you do say that.

Okay. Thanks.

How do you like that?

This was stuck in Jonas after he died.

- And what killed him?
- The same poison that killed Dr. Benton.

I know we're getting no place fast.

Well, what do you say, mastermind?

I'm going crazy
and you're playing with a doll.

I guess we're both going crazy.

We were talking about this
God of vengeance you called it?

Yes. He's a local deity found
among the nomad tribes of the Gobi Desert.

In the same district
as the Emperor's tomb?

Yes, as far as I know,
that's the only place.

Now, wait a minute, children.

I don't want to hear anymore
about Oriental hocus pocus.

All I want to know is who killed
Doc Benton and who killed Jonas.

I think maybe we're getting warm.

- Any report on the two men in the motorboat?
- No.

The Harbor
patrol hasn't turned up a thing.

- Are you desperate?
- Am I desperate?

You're looking at a man who's got five
newspapers, a police commissioner,

whole town around his neck
and he asked me, am I desperate?

I mean, desperate enough
to try a long shot?

Sure, I'll try anything. What is it?

Get me the Tribune.

Mr. Miles.

Jimmy Wong calling.

Following the startling announcement
that Mason, the missing pilot

of the Benton expedition, had been found
and the diagnosis of his condition.

It was announced that he has been taken
to St Christopher's Hospital

and is shortly expected to regain

The police confidently expect that
as soon as he does so,

they will obtain valuable information
in the Benton murder investigation.

I run this wire
through the one and connect it up.

If I'm right, the killer
will try to prevent Mason from talking.

And for tonight, I'm going to be Mason.

But Jimmy,
how can you be sure that Mason's alive?

I can't, but I'm banking on the killer

not being sure either.

Then Mason might even be the killer.

That's right.

- Jimmy.
- Oh, there's nothing to worry about.

All we're trying to do
is get these people out in the open.

This microphone will pick up
the slightest noise,

you and Grady, and I'll be listening in.

If any trouble starts, we'll know it
as soon as Jimmy.

Come on, let's get to bed.

Promised to yell if anything happens.

I promise. But good luck.

Oh. Snap out of it.

Nothing's going to happen.

The crowds are knee deep in cops.

Nice city, Lane.

Yeah. Street must be off his, not us
patrol in a joint like this.

Sure. I never seen one of these
stakeouts work.


- Everything okay?
- Yeah, listen.

This is station Wong signing off.

We'll be back later.
With some interesting disclosures, I hope.

That's good.
Keep it to me.


- Hey, Grady. - Yeah.
- Come on, come on. Stay awake.

- What time is it?
- 2:30.

- You heard anything?
- No, no, not a peep.

The men trying to keep the same hours
as cops do, don't they?


- You'd better give me a couple of minutes.
- Right.

It's a matter.

Oh, I'm worried.

There's nothing to worry about.

Drop it.

Come on. Hurry.

There's something I think will
interest you.

So, Frasier,
it was you who threw the knife at me.

Sure. We were watching from the garden.

So very nice of you
to arrange this party, Mr. Wong.

Perhaps I'd better introduce myself.

By Mason, whom you so ricely
decided to impersonate.

I was hoping you'd turn up,
particularly after

we found the God of vengeance
in your hideout back of Charley Won.

Then you can see this gives me
a chance to satisfy the little fellow.

You and Fraser were partners, huh?

That's right.

Frasier decided to double cross me,

tried to kill me,
and left me for dead in the desert.

Fortunately, a wandering tribe
picked me up and nursed me back to health.

That's where you got the God of vengeance.

That's why you broke into Frasier's house
and searched for the scroll.

- You knew he had it.
- It's a lie.

Oh, no, it isn't, Frasier.

And we're going to take you someplace
where we can make your talk.

I finished in that night,
but you interrupted me.

Since then, he's been in hiding.

But I thought this little trick of yours
would smoke him out.

I'm afraid you're going to have
a little trouble getting away.

I don't think so.
Toreno, there is our intern.

We have an ambulance waiting downstairs.

- Hey, Grady.
- Yeah?

- Haven't you heard anything or nothing?
- No, nothing.

A few minutes ago, there was just a
little click, and then there was.

- Yeah.
- Give me that headset.

Take Frasier out.

I'll keep Wong busy until
you get started.

- Come on, Frasier, get moving.
- You can't block me.

This is no bluff.

- It's dead, something's happened to the wire.
- I mean, it's dead. I want to fix the thing.

It was already one before.

All right, break it up. Relax.
Come on, get up.

Nice work, Jimmy.

Well, Frasier, you'd better talk now.

As soon as I saw
the film of the expedition,

I felt sure that you had cut it
and that the camera had photographed

more than you admitted.

The reason you killed Doc Benton is,

because you didn't
want him to tell about the oil.

What about Jonas?

He knew that Frasier had stolen
the scroll and was working with Mason

to try to get it back.
Frasier killed him, too.

You were very clever, Mr. Wong,
but you still haven't got the scroll.

And what's more, you will never get it.

- You see, I destroyed it.
- Oddly enough

I believe you, Frasier, But you didn't
destroy it without photographing it.

The scroll itself
would have been difficult to dispose of.

Besides, the contents
are the most important thing.

- Searching, captain.
- Come on.

- What am I looking for?
- Film.

That's probably it.

- Okay? That's too small.
- The pictures inside.

Open it.

May I?

This is part of China.

I think we can trust you to see that
it remains so.

- What do you think, captain?
- Well, I think you're right.

Except that
I think someone should go along to help.

And is someone who understands
the language and, well, the customs

that is somebody like yourself.

Two wise men who understand a nod.

Now, come on. Come on.