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Columbo - Mystery Movie Collection, 1989 (1989)

1 rating: 3.0
Mystery & Suspense movie directed by James Frawley, Leo Penn, and Sam Wanamaker

After a 10-year break from the role that made him a TV superstar, Peter Falk returned as rumpled LAPD homicide detective Lt. Columbo in 1989, appearing in feature-length episodes ofThe ABC Mystery Movie. The first five of those TV movies are collected … see full wiki

Tags: Movies
Genre: Mystery
1 review about Columbo - Mystery Movie Collection, 1989...

Columbo's Return Worth a Second Look

  • Nov 30, 2007
Rating:
+3
Initially, the return of Columbo was a disappointment. Peter Falk seemed a bit groggy, and the homicidal developments seemed more routine. Each episode started to make eyes glaze over. The writing wasn't as tightly woven, and the suspense of how he would unmask the ingenious deeds of the rich and famous seemed less of a revelation.

However, that is until you give the 1989 return movie series a second look. Making cursory judgments, one can later uncover elements not suspected before. There are captivating adventures and, while the biggest names in show biz aren't always present, Columbo keeps everyone, including the audience, on their toes. While there is some diminishing of sleuthing this harvest, the cinematography excels from the original, and the ingenuity is present by method and evasion.

"Columbo Goes to the Guillotine" is a warm-up. However, the heinousness of the crime is better than par from its celebrated predecessors. Better yet is "Murder, Smoke, and Shadows," which starts to warm up with its dramatic resolution and special effects. "Grand Deceptions" probably gets the most play of the bunch in syndication. Here a military colonel tries to make a murder look like an accident. The best episode is "Sex and the Married Detective" where Columbo psychologically unravels a celebrated radio talk show sex therapist who tries to frame a duo identity. Skillfully performed, Columbo is at the top of his game. Finishing the collection is "Murder, A Self-Portrait" where a philanderer tries to make a murder look like a drowning. An understandable tribute is made at the end, and the episode is rewarding for how Columbo puts all of the pieces together.

Once one recovers from the initial shock and disappointment, Columbo's return is a rewarding addition to one's television DVD library.

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