GenreAdventure, Comedy, Crime Duration CountryUnited States
WriterEarl Derr Biggers, John Larkin, Lester Ziffren Release dateMarch 1, 1940 (1940-03-01) Film seriesThe House Without a Key Film Series CastSidney Toler (Charlie Chan), Jean Rogers (Kathi Lenesch (Baroness Kathi von Czardos)), Lionel Atwill (Cliveden Compton), Mary Nash (Miss Jennie Finch), Victor Sen Yung (Jimmy Chan (as Sen Yung)), Kane Richmond (Richard Cabot) Similar moviesMurder by Death, Black Magic, Charlie Chan in Reno, Charlie Chan in Paris, The Feathered Serpent, Charlie Chan: Behind That Curtain
The Chinese detective (Sidney Toler) catches an Axis spy ring out to blow up the Panama Canal.
Charlie Chan in Panama is a 1940 mystery film starring Sidney Toler. It is an unaccredited remake of Jacques Devals novel "Marie Galante", produced by Fox Film Corporation in 1934, directed by Henry King.
Charlie impersonates an employee of the U.S. government to foil an espionage plot which would destroy part of the Panama Canal, trapping a Navy fleet on its way to the Pacific after maneuvers in the Atlantic.
Charlie Chan must stop a spy from destroying the Panama Canal, trapping a Navy fleet on its way to the Pacific after maneuvers in the Atlantic. As the U.S. fleet prepares to navigate the waters of the Panama Canal, Panama City becomes rife with spies.
A new group of suspects appears with the arrival of a sea plane bound for Balboa. Among the suspects are novelist Clivedon Compton, matronly school teacher Miss Jennie Finch, sinister scientist Dr. Rudolph Grosser, cafe proprietor Manolo, singer Kathi Lenesch (real name Kathi von Tzardas), cigarette salesman Achmed Halide, government engineer Richard Cabot and government agent Godley.
Upon landing, Godley goes to a hat shop owned by Fu Yuen, alias Charlie Chan, to enlist the sleuths help in unmasking the deadly spy known only as Reiner. Just as Godley is about to divulge Reiners real identity, he falls to the ground, dead, leaving Chan to expose Reiner before the spy can sabotage the canal.
As the other suspects are murdered, one by one, first Compton, then Manolo, Chan learns that the canals Miraflores locks are to be blown up at ten that night. Chan then sequesters the suspects at the plant, forcing Miss Finch to expose herself as Reiner in order to escape death. With Reiner under arrest, the fleet sails safely through the locks to protect democracy.