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Dick Tracy - Volumes 1 & 2 (Complete Serial) (2-DVD) (1937)

Ralph Byrd  |  NR |  DVD
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Ralph Byrd
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Alpha Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: November 27, 2007
  • Run Time: 150 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #422,236 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

The complete ""Dick Tracy"" serial on two DVDs.

Customer Reviews

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"Dick Tracy" is a 15-chapter Republic serial with Ralph Byrd in the title role, released in February of 1937, the first of four serials featuring Chester Gould's detective. Unlike the others it was directed by Ray Taylor and Alan James. The story was written by Morgan Cox and George Morgan, with screenplay by Barry Shipman and Winston Miller.

A mysterious criminal known as "The Spider" or "The Lame One" is head of a gang, keeping his underlings in line through fear, killing those who would disobey him and leaving the image of a spider on their foreheads. FBI agent Dick Tracy gets involved due to the murder of an acquaintance, Ellery Brewster (John Dilson), whose lawyer was Dick's brother, Gordon (Richard Beach). Gordon is abducted by the Spider gang, whose scientific aide, Moloch (John Piccori) performs a brain operation so Gordon will be unable to tell good from evil, and be subject to control by the Lame One. Gordon suffers a change in appearance (to Carlton Young) so even his brother can't recognise him.

The Lame One uses an avanced aircraft, "The Wing" to aid his schemes including an attempt to destroy the then new Bay Bridge with sound waves. The gang tries to sell defense secrets to foreign governments, as well as the more normal gangster activities of stealing furs and gold, and making counterfeit money. These individual schemes are defeated in a chapter or two, keeping the plot varied while Tracy tries to capture the gang, and find out what happened to his brother.

All four Dick Tracy serials are good, but this one has a dark atmosphere, sci-fi elements, and grotesque villians providing an unusual twist to the fairly-standard serial movie plot.
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The plot starts with some guy getting hypnotized and brainwashed so I wasn't gonna like it. I didn't watch much, maybe part of the first chapter or two. The villain seems well played up. I like a couple of the other Tracy serials though!
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