The Mystery of Mr. Wong

Watch The Mystery of Mr. Wong

"A gay party is interrupted by murder and the world's most costly jewel stolen!"
  • NR
  • 1939
  • 1 hr 8 min
  • 6.1  (931)

The Mystery of Mr. Wong is a 1939 crime mystery film directed by William Nigh. The film stars the legendary Hollywood actor Boris Karloff in the lead role of James Lee Wong, a Chinese detective who solves the mystery of a wealthy collector who is murdered for a rare ancient artefact, "The Eye of the Daughter of the Moon". Grant Withers plays the role of Captain Street, a police detective who works alongside Mr. Wong to solve the case, while Dorothy Tree portrays Ilona, the daughter of the collector and the main suspect in the murder case.

The movie opens with the murder of Danforth, who fails to deliver on his promise to sell the Eye of the Daughter of the Moon to Wong's friend, Dr. John Benton. The red herring character Benton is murdered shortly afterwards by the same perpetrator, who is later revealed to be Ilona. Mr. Wong is called in by Captain Street to investigate the case, and his deductive skills lead him to suspect that the murderer is someone very close to the collector. As the plot thickens, Mr. Wong is almost killed by the murderer but ultimately triumphs when he is able to trap the killer and deliver him/her to the authorities.

The Mystery of Mr. Wong stands out not only because of Karloff's stellar performance but also due to the way it portrayed a Chinese detective in the lead role. At a time when Hollywood was notorious for its stereotyping of Asian characters, Karloff's portrayal of James Lee Wong was refreshingly different. While still not entirely free of stereotypes, Mr. Wong is depicted as intelligent, insightful, and brave- qualities which allowed him to come out on top and win praise even from the skeptical and condescending Captain Street.

Apart from the performances of the lead actors, another element that makes this film worth watching is its depiction of the art world. The artefact at the centre of its plot - the Eye of the Daughter of the Moon - is a jewel with an interesting backstory, and the film explores its journey from imperial China to America. With the twist of the buyer being a museum curator, it also sheds light on the greed that can be found in the world of art and antiques.

Overall, The Mystery of Mr. Wong is a tight, well-constructed, and curiously memorable film that is worth watching, both for Karloff's and the art world storylines. If you are a fan of classic mystery or detective films with a touch of intrigue, this one is definitely worth checking out.

The Mystery of Mr. Wong is a 1939 mystery with a runtime of 1 hour and 8 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.1.

The Mystery of Mr. Wong
Where to Watch The Mystery of Mr. Wong
The Mystery of Mr. Wong is available to watch free on Plex. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime, The Roku Channel and Amazon. Some platforms allow you to rent The Mystery of Mr. Wong for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 8 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.1  (931)