Mystery Of Mr. Wong, The

1762. THE MYSTERY OF MR. WONG (1939-usa). With Boris Karloff, Grant Withers, Dorothy Tree, Craig Reynolds. Karloff first appeared as James Lee Wong, the urbane Oriental detective created by Hugh Wiley, in 1936’s “Mr. Wong, Detective.” The film proved so successful that it was followed by a series, and this is its most entertaining first follow-up. Wong is a fascinating character: he’s a graduate of Heidelberg and Oxford, and is a “fine scholar, a brilliantly clever man” who is “probably one of the five foremost living authorities on ancient art and literature in the Orient.” From the outset, it will be easy to spot the murder victim. He’s Brandon Edwards, a noted art collector who’s come into possession of “The Eye of the Daughter of the Moon,” an exquisite gem which carries an ancient curse, and which he’s smuggled out of China. Edwards also is traumatizing his wife, constantly accusing her of infidelity; at the same time, he hints that he’ll be more than willing to fool around with his household’s Oriental maid (who has an agenda of her own in her position as one of Edwards’ employees). There’s a host of additional suspects, starting with the fellow who’s in love with Mrs. Edwards, and is extremely disturbed that she is living in terror of her husband. Edwards is summarily murdered, and it will be up to Wong to wade through the evidence, eliminate suspect after suspect, and point his finger at the guilty. 69 minutes. Crime-Mystery-Suspense