Chandu the Magician


Action / Adventure / Comedy / Fantasy / Horror / Sci-Fi

IMDb Rating 6.2/10 10 1155 1.2K

Top cast

Bela Lugosi as Roxor
Irene Ware as Princess Nadji
June Lang as Betty Lou Regent
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
657.84 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 11 min
Seeds 6
1.19 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 11 min
Seeds 14

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Rainey-Dawn 7 / 10

An Entertaining Fantasy

I have to agree with other reviewers on this film: Bela Lugosi steals the show. He's good a usual in this underrated fantasy film.

The sets and costuming are lavish, elegant and beautiful eye candy. Loved the Egyptian setting. The special effects are great for it's time era.

The story is good, it has quite a bit of romance and comedy in it. The film does have some action and it's fun adventure to watch. It's simply a worthwhile film classic to view.

Simply worded: If you like film surrounding magic, mysticism, fantasy, Egyptian-themes, and/or Bela Lugosi then I'm sure you will enjoy Chandu the Magician.


Reviewed by AlsExGal 6 / 10

Curses, foiled again! ...

... I almost expect somebody in this film to say those tired old lines. This is one of the few precode Fox films that has managed to survive. So many were lost to vault fires or just nitrate deterioration from neglect. Odd how this obscurity survived and is on DVD even!

Chandu (Edmund Lowe) is a magician who seems to just be "graduating" as the film begins with a ceremony full of mumbo jumbo that I cannot make sense of even when I rewind and replay it several times. Chandu finds out that his brother-in-law, who was working on a death ray invention, has been kidnapped by Roxor (Bela Lugosi), and so he rushes to his sister's side to protect her and her daughter and try to save his brother-in-law before Roxor can learn the secret of the death ray. And what does Roxor want? Power? RIches? Fame? no he wants to destroy society so mankind will revert to beasts and he can be the smartest guy in the world. Weird. I guess this is what happens when a sociopath is forced to wear a dunce cap as a kid.

If this sounds like something out of silent film, that is how it plays out too. The romance scenes, the action scenes, everything plays out with silent film technique in direction and acting. I generally really like Edmund Lowe and his roles, so I have to lay this at the feet of the director. I could take this in stride in 1929 and 1930 during the transition to sound, but that time is long over.

Probably the most tiresome character, though, is Albert, Chandu's loyal companion. He is cowardly, a drunk, and always having to be rescued by Chandu even though saving Albert from himself is NOT his primary mission. Prohibition was still in force, so maybe all of these unfunny drunks I encounter in these Prohibition era films are supposed to be knocks at an unpopular law. But today, it's just not funny.

Mildly recommended for fans of Edmund Lowe and Bela Lugosi.

Reviewed by RJV 7 / 10

Enjoyable serial-style hokum

If you like old-fashioned cliffhanger thrills, you'll enjoy CHANDU THE MAGICIAN. It has everything you could want in a serial adventure- a dashing hero, a megalomaniacal villain, an exotic setting, and a series of hair-raising perils that keeps the scenario rolling until the end. CHANDU's plot which concerns the title character's supernatural efforts to prevent the fiendish Roxor from taking over the world is trite and simplistic. However, the story's very triteness and simplicity is part of CHANDU's corny charm.

CHANDU boasts dazzling set design and fluid cinematography that create a fascinating, mysterious Egyptian milieu with majestic temple sets and an atmospheric desert locale. CHANDU's sense of adventure and mystique is further enhanced by special effects illustrating the powers of both Chandu and a death ray Roxor plans to employ in his world-domination plot. Even by today's Industrial Light and Magic standards, these effects look impressive.

Edmund Lowe is acceptable in the title role of Chandu but Bela Lugosi in the role of Roxor steals the film. Lugosi tackles his part with a demonic zeal, displaying odious glee over his scheme in both his facial expressions and line deliveries. There is little restraint or subtlety in his performance, but Lugosi projects such persuasive charisma that one can forgive his indulgences. Overall, CHANDU is no classic, but it's fun escapist entertainment.

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