Movieland Mystery Photo (Updated + + + +)

Lettering against a black background.
This week’s mystery movie was the 1957 Twentieth Century-Fox picture China Gate, with Gene Barry, Angie Dickinson, Nat “King” Cole, Paul Dubov, Lee Van Cleef, Georg Givot, Gerald Milton, Neyle Morrow, Marcel Dalio, Maurice Marsac, Warren Hsieh, Paul Busch, Sasha Harden, James Hong, William Soo Hoo, Walter Soo Hoo and Weaver Levy.

harrisonsreports39harr_0088Music by Victor Young. Extended by his old friend Max Steiner.

Photography by Joseph Biroc.

Art direction by John Mansbridge.

Edited by Gene Fowler Jr. and Dean Harrison.

Production manager William J. Magginetti.

Special effects by Norman Breedlove.

Music editor Audray Granville.

Set decorations by Glen Daniels.

Supervising sound editor Bert Schoenfeld.

Property master Leigh Carson.

Wardrobe by Henry West and Beau Van Den Ecker.

Optical effects by Linwood Dunn.

Assistant director Harold E. Knox.

Makeup by Don Cash.

Sound by Jean Speak.

CinemaScope lenses by Bausch and Lomb.

Song China Gate by Victor Young and Harold Adamson.

Written, produced-directed by Samuel Fuller.

Further information about China Gate is available from the AFI Catalog.

China Gate is available on DVD from Critics’ Choice Videos.


I picked China Gate because I wanted to feature James Hong (Wednesday’s mystery fellow) and Gene Fowler Jr., one of the editors on the picture. Gene’s father was the famous newsman turned screenwriter Gene Fowler – and Gene was the brother of Black Dahlia fictionalist Will Fowler.

I’m going to guess the Bosley Crowther disliked China Gate.

Nope. Fobbed off on one of the alphabet critics, Abe Weiler (May 23, 1957), who didn’t like it: 

Although the Far East is still a seething area, China Gate, which opened at the Paramount yesterday, reveals something less than hot melodrama.

While its depiction of a successful sortie by a French and Vietnamese patrol to destroy a major Communist munitions dump hidden in a mountain fastness occasionally makes for excitement, its simultaneous attempts to make capital of an off-beat love story is discursive and repetitious. Sabotage and romance do not seem to mix in China Gate.

For Monday, we have a lad of mystery.

Update: This is Warren Hsieh

Woman giving a massage.
For “Tricky Tuesday,” we have a mystery woman. Her mysterious companions will be revealed later in the week.

Update: For “Aha Thursday,” we add the mysterious client of the mysterious masseuse!

Update for Friday: Adding our mysterious leading lady.

Update: This is Angie Dickinson, Lee Van Cleef and Mabel Smaney.

Man in camouflage fatigues with rifle.
For “Hm Wednesday,” we have a mystery fellow.

Update: This is the young James Hong.

Brain Trust roll call: Jenny M. (mystery movie and both mystery guests) and Sylvia E. (mystery movie and both mystery guests).


Also for “Aha Thursday,” we have this mysterious fellow.

Update: This is Nat “King” Cole, with Gene Barry and Warren Hsieh in the distance.

Brain Trust roll call: Mary Mallory (mystery movie, all mystery guests and mysterious director), Jenny M. (Wednesday’s mysterious fellow), Sheila (Wednesday’s mysterious fellow), Sylvia E. (Wednesday’s mystery fellow), Mike Hawks (mystery movie and all mystery guests) and Benito (mystery movie, Monday’s mystery lad, Wednesday’s mystery fellow and Friday’s mysterious leading lady).

Mystery woman holds bottle. Has feet on table. Mystery leading man is looking at her.
For Friday, we have our mysterious leading man and leading lady.

Update: This is Angie Dickinson and Gene Barry, with Warren Hsieh in the background. 

Brain Trust roll call: Sylvia E. (mystery masseuse client and Thursday’s mysterious vocal artist, plus leads for Friday), Mary Mallory (Thursday’s mysterious vocal artist, leading man way off in the distance), Anne Papineau (mystery movie and all mystery guests), Howard Mandelbaum (mystery movie and all mystery guests), Greg (mystery movie and all mystery guests plus leads for Friday), Mike Hawks (mystery masseuse client and Thursday’s mystery vocal artist), Gary (mystery movie and Thursday’s mysterious vocal artist), Mark G. (mystery movie, Monday’s mystery lad, Wednesday’s mystery guest and Thursday’s mysterious vocal artist), L.C. (mystery movie and mystery cast) and Megan and Thom (mystery movie and all mystery guests).

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1957, Film, Hollywood, Mystery Photo and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to Movieland Mystery Photo (Updated + + + +)

  1. Matt Berger says:

    This skeptical lad reminds me of Layne Tom, Jr.


  2. Jenny M says:

    Movie is China Gate (1957) with Warren Hsieh and Mabel Smaney


  3. Jenny M says:

    Movie is China Gate (1957) with Warren Hsieh and Mabel Smaney.


  4. Sylvia E. says:

    China Gate 1957
    Saw this movie years ago on The Late Show. Tuesday’s massage moment helped confirm it for me.
    Mon – Warren Hsieh
    Tues – Mabel Smaney


  5. Jenny M says:

    Warren Hseigh and Mabel Smaney in China Gate.

    This is my third time trying to post. When I pressed “post comment” the comment disappeared and the “under moderation” message did not appear.


  6. Mary Mallory says:

    CHINA GATE. Warren Hsieh Monday, Mabel Smaney Tuesday, and James Hong today. Samuel Fuller director.


  7. Jenny M says:

    Janes Hong


  8. Sheila says:

    James Hong for Wednesday?


  9. Sylvia E. says:

    I think that is Wednesday’s guy is a very young James Hong.


  10. mike hawks says:

    Warren Hsieh, Mabel Smaney and James Hong in CHINA GATE.


  11. Benito says:

    A young Lo Pan, er James Hong?


  12. Benito says:

    Guessing its CHINA GATE 1957. Same guns, similar kid with same hat. If so, Angie Dickinson by Friday


  13. Sylvia E. says:

    Thursday – Lee Van Cleef is the client of the masseuse. Image 2 has Nat King Cole.
    So Friday will bring Angie Dickinson and Gene Barry.


  14. Mary Mallory says:

    Gene Barry and Nat King Cole for Thursday.


  15. Anne Papineau says:

    Late again but it’s “China Gate,” featuring young Warren Hsieh, Mabel Smaney as the massage therapist and Lee Van Cleef getting a rubdown, James Hong and Nat King Cole.


  16. Monday: Warren Hsieh in CHINA GATE
    Tuesday: Mabel Smaney, Lee Van Cleef
    Wednesday: James Hong
    Thursday: Nat ‘King’ Cole


  17. Greg says:

    Monday is Warren Hsieh. Tuesday’s pair are Mabel Smaney and Lee Van Cleef. Wednesday is James Hong. Thursday is Nat King Cole. Friday will probably be Angie Dickinson and Gene Barry in 1957’s China Gate.


  18. mike hawks says:

    Lee Van Cleef and Nat King Cole.


  19. Gary says:

    How about Nat King Cole in China Gate?


  20. Mark G. says:

    Thursday’s mysterious fellow looks like Nat King Cole. Would that make our movie 1957’s China Gate, with Warren Hsieh as Monday’s lad and James Hong as Wednesday’s mystery man?


  21. LC says:

    China Gate (1957) w/Angie Dickinson, Gene Barry, Lee Van Cleeve, James Hong, Nat King Cole…


  22. Megan and Thom says:

    Our movie is China Gate. Our mystery guests are:
    Monday: Warren Hsieh
    Tuesday: Mabel Smaney and Lee Van Cleef, I think
    Wednesday: James Hong
    Thursday: Nat King Cole


  23. Mary Mallory says:

    Angie Dickinson and Lee Van Cleef Tuesday, and angie and Gene Barry today.


  24. B.J. Merholz says:

    I don’t know the movie but I think I know Sam Fuller when I see him and all your photos add up to Fuller for me.


  25. mike hawks says:

    Angie Dickinson and Gene Barry.


  26. Michael Lott says:

    Thursday’s photo is Nat King Cole and the movie is China Gate


  27. Angie Dickinson & Gene Barry.


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