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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "GREAT two disc serial"
I find serials great fun and collect almost all of them. This Serial is like most of the era, with good guys and bad but Buster Crabbe makes it easy to stay interested and worth viewing. Mostly I wanted to tell prospective buyers this is a TWO disc set, not ONE. In case it makes a difference to anyone. I tried to change the data but got a response that Amazon system...
Published on July 6, 2010 by Peleke

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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars VCI Entertainment and Serials
This is not as much a review of the serial as it is a comment about the previous review. Anyone who thinks VCI Entertainment of Tulsa Oklahoma has good serial prints hasn't seen many serials. VCI has more serials than anyone else, but their work is suspect at best. In their latest catalog they advertise the Buck Jones serial, "White Eagle" with a nice picture of a...
Published on November 11, 2007 by Richard B. Claiborne


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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "GREAT two disc serial", July 6, 2010
By 
Peleke (Seattle, WA USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Red Barry (DVD)
I find serials great fun and collect almost all of them. This Serial is like most of the era, with good guys and bad but Buster Crabbe makes it easy to stay interested and worth viewing. Mostly I wanted to tell prospective buyers this is a TWO disc set, not ONE. In case it makes a difference to anyone. I tried to change the data but got a response that Amazon system thinks it is one and wants to leave it that way.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars VCI Entertainment and Serials, November 11, 2007
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This review is from: Red Barry [VHS] (VHS Tape)
This is not as much a review of the serial as it is a comment about the previous review. Anyone who thinks VCI Entertainment of Tulsa Oklahoma has good serial prints hasn't seen many serials. VCI has more serials than anyone else, but their work is suspect at best. In their latest catalog they advertise the Buck Jones serial, "White Eagle" with a nice picture of a poster for a non-serial made by Buck Jones by the same title. Picky you say? How can any professional film company make such a careless and ignorant error? VCI's catalog of serials is extensive, but many are very inferior to other serials restored by private collectors. Their shoddy work isn't limited to serials either. I recently purchased a set of Buster Crabbe westerns listing 4 movies. One movie listed in the advertisement and on the cover isn't on the DVD. Another film with a different title is, though. But, enough about VCI's poor quality work and inferior marketing....Red Barry is a disappointing serial that's so hard to follow that the actors can't seem to figure out what's going on either. It's basically a series of chapters where several groups pass bonds back and forth with such regularity that the group with the bonds doesn't even know they have them. The picture quality of this VHS version is fair and the sound is marginal. Like a lot of serials that VCI has released on VHS, this one still hasn't been released on DVD, perhaps this one because it's not very good.

Finally, if you're looking for serials you're probably going to end up with some VCI ones simply because of the volumes of materials they have. If you want high quality restoration, VCI lags behind other sources though and could do a lot better job if they wanted to.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Red Barry (Serial) (1938) ... Buster Crabbe ... VCI Ent. (2010)", June 22, 2010
This review is from: Red Barry (DVD)
VCI Entertainment and Universal Pictures present ~ "RED BARRY" (Serial) (1938) (Dolby digitally remastered) -- Based on the Will Gould comic strip distributed by King Features Syndicated, Inc. ~ With 13 Chapter plays of vintage serial episodes jam packed with thrilling action sequences and stunts that will keep you on the edge of your seat --- Story line has the entire Universal cast and crew searching for $2,000,000 in stolen bonds from a friendly Asian country --- Can Red Barry (Buster Crabbe) and girl reporter Mississippi (Frances Robinson) discover the evil plan of number villain of 1938 Quong Lee (Frank Lackteen) and his cohort ballet dancer Natacha (Edna Sedgewick) --- Are the Russians involved through Natacha's undercover work steal the bonds to purchase war planes --- Who is Wing Fu (Cyril Delevanti) and is Hong Kong Cholly (Philip Ahn) an agent for him, are we getting dizzy yet with the game of "keep away bonds" --- And when does Red Barry get a minutes rest with lions, speed boats and trap doors opening at every opportune moment --- Must make mention that actress Frances Robinson who portrays Mississippi steals the show with every scene she appears in.

Take note, many veteran actors came on board for this fast paced action serial such as Philip Ahn, Wade Boteler, Lane Chandler, Bud Geary, Edward Hearn, Frank Lackteen, Wheeler Oakman, Eddie Parker, Stanley Price and Charles Stevens appeared in B-Westerns and Serials during the '30s, '40s and '50s --- This was the cast which all worked together for years and decades in this tight family of players for our enjoyment.

Special footnote, actor Buster Crabbe graduated from the University of Southern California and won the 400 meter freestyle in which he medaled in the 1932 Olympics, went to work for Paramount in "King of the Jungle" (1933), next role was "Tarzan the Fearless (1933), Crabbe returned to Paramount Pictures was featured in Zane Grey Westerns which were well received, then came the roles that made him a household word "Flash Gordon" and "Buck Rogers" at Universal Picture Serials (1936-1940), meanwhile PRC Studios was looking for a leading hero "Billy the Kid" and "Billy Carson" in the 1940's B-Western series and ran its course for six years, later made several television appearances and appeared in a series "Captain Gallant and the Foreign Legion" (1955-1957).

Under the production staff of:
Ford Beebe (Director)
Alan James (Director)
Will Gould (comic strip)
Norman S. Hall (original screenplay)
Ray Trampe (original screenplay)
Barney A. Sarecky (associate producer)
Jerome Ash (cinematographer)
Saul A. Goodkind (film editor)
Louis Sackin (film editor)
Alvin Todd (film editor)
Ralph M. DeLacy (art director)
Eddie Parker (stunt double: Buster Crabbe)
Tom Steele .(stunt double: Stanley Price)

BIOS:
1. Buster Crabbe (aka Clarence Linden Crabbe)
Date of Birth: 7 February 1908 - Oakland, California
Date of Death: 23 April 1983, Scottsdale, Arizona

the cast includes:
Larry 'Buster' Crabbe ... Red Barry
Edna Sedgewick ... Natacha
Frances Robinson ... Mississippi
Cyril Delevanti ... Wing Fu
Frank Lackteen ... Quong Lee
Wade Boteler ... Insp. Scott
Hugh Huntley ... Harry Dycer, aka Valentine Vane
Philip Ahn ... Hong Kong Cholly
William Ruhl ... C.E. Mannix
William Gould ... Commissioner
Wheeler Oakman ... Weaver
Stanley Price ... Petrov
Earl Douglas ... Igor
Charles Stevens ... Capt. Moy
Lane Chandler ... Ship steward
Bud Geary ... Vaudeville Actor
Eddie Parker ... Taxi Driver
Tom Steele ... Henchman Gray

CHAPTER TITLES:
DISC ONE (1)
1. Millions for Defense
2. The Curtain Falls
3. The Decoy
4. High Stakes
5. Desperate Chances
6. The Human Target
7. Midnight Tragedy
8. The Devil's Disguise
9. Between Two Fires

DISC TWO (2)
10.The False Trail
11.Heavy Odds
12.The Enemy Within
13.Mission of Mercy
Bonus: Photo Gallery

Not seen on television over the last fifty plus years --- this 1938 serial was one of the many Universal cliff hangers based on comic strip characters --- later shown in the early 50s to the young television viewing audience --- but suddenly vanished. alongside "Ace Drummond" (1936), "Tim Tyler's Luck" (1937) , "Radio Patrol" (1937) , and others --- Except for the "Flash Gordon" trilogy (1936-40) and "Buck Rogers" (1939), also starring Buster Crabbe - these Saturday Matinee serials seemed to have dropped "off the radar' but thankfully have been revived for Home Video on VHS and now DVD - thanks to VCI Entertainment.

Great job by VCI and their staff, as the digital transfer is a clean, clear and crisp print --- This collection has extras with a Photo Gallery and Trailers --- order your copy now from Amazon who has the best for your every growing hobby or addiction.

Total Time: 255 mins on 2 DVD ~ VCI Entertainment #8585 ~ (6/29/2010)
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "The King of Serials...VCI Entertainment ~ Red Barry (1938)", November 8, 2005
This review is from: Red Barry [VHS] (VHS Tape)
VCI Entertainment and Universal Pictures present..."Red Barry" (1938) (Dolby digitally remastered), based on the Will Gould comic strip distributed by King Features Syndicated, Inc.with 13 Chapter plays of vintage serial episodes jam packed with thrilling action sequences and stunts that will keep you on the edge of your seat...story line has the entire Universal cast and crew searching for $2,000,000 in stolen bonds from a friendly Asian country...can Red Barry (Buster Crabbe) and girl reporter Mississippi (Frances Robinson) discover the evil plan of number villain of 1938 Quong Lee (Frank Lackteen) and his cohort ballet dancer Natacha (Edna Sedgewick)...are the Russians involved through Natacha's undercover work steal the bonds to purchase war planes...who is Wing Fu (Cyril Delevanti) and is Hong Kong Cholly (Philip Ahn) an agent for him, are we getting dizzy yet with the game of "keep away bonds"...and when does Red Barry get a minutes rest with lions, speed boats and trap doors opening at every opportune moment....must make mention that actress Frances Robinson who portrays Mississippi steals the show with every scene she appears in....meanwhile don't leave the theater until the final chapter is over and done with "Mission of Mercy", when we find out who winds up with the bonds....just remember double thrills, chills, mystery and suspense...hitting the bull's eye with excitement...don't miss a single spine thrilling episode..return next week to this local theater for another episode of action and adventure that will keep you thrilled until the next chapter.

Under director's Ford Beebe and Alan James, producer Henry MacRae, associate producer Barney A. Sarecky, Original story and screenplay Norman S. Hall, Ray Trampe, Will Gould (comic strip), musical score by Charles Previn, Frank Skinner and Franz Waxman...the cast includes Buster Crabbe (Red Barry), Edna Sedgewick (Natacha), Frances Robinson (Mississippi), Wade Boteler (Insp. Scott), Wheeler Oakman (Weaver), Cyril Delevanti (Wing Fu), Frank Lackteen (Quong Lee), Hugh Huntley (Harry Dycer, aka Valentine Vane), Philip Ahn (Hong Kong Cholly), William Ruhl (C.E. Mannix), William Gould (Commissioner), Stanley Price (Petrov), Earl Douglas (Igor), Charles Stevens (Capt. Moy), Eric Wilton (Tubbs, Vane's Butle), Lane Chandler (ship steward/freight officer), Bud Geary (Vaudeville Actor), George Magrill (Roadblock Policeman), Eddie Parker (Taxi Driver/also stunt double for Buster Crabbe), Tom Steele (Gray-henchman/stunt double for Stanley Price).........special footnote, many veteran actors came onboard for this fast paced action serial Philip Ahn, Wade Boteler, Lane Chandler, Bud Geary, Edward Hearn, Frank Lackteen, Wheeler Oakman, Eddie Parker, Stanley Price and Charles Stevens appeared in B-Westerns and Serials during the '30s, '40s and '50s....meanwhile back to our Universal Serial which is always good till the last drop and this serial is no exception...there is a great deal of entertainment here for the cliffhanger fans out there...all courtesy of VCI Entertainment, who in my humble opinion is the best there is in restoring early serials and features.

CHAPTER TITLES:

1. Millions for Defense

2. The Curtain Falls

3. The Decoy

4. High Stakes

5. Desperate Chances

6. The Human Target

7. Midnight Tragedy

8. The Devil's Disguise

9. Between Two Fires

10.The False Trail

11.Heavy Odds

12.The Enemy Within

13.Mission of Mercy

If you're into vintage serials as I am, why not pick up a copy of the following titles from VCI Home Video:

VCI CLIFFHANGER TRAILERS:

1. Adventures of Red Ryder (Don "Red" Barry)

2. Adventures of the Flying Cadets (Bobby Jordan)

3. Buck Rogers (Buster Crabbe)

4. Captain Midnight (Dave O'Brien)

5. Captain Video: Master of the Stratosphere (Judd Holdren & I. Stanford Jolley)

6. Dick Tracy's G-Men (Ralph Byrd)

7. Don Winslow of the Navy (Don Terry)

8. Don Winslow of the Coast Guard (Don Terry)

9. Drums of Fu Manchu (Henry Brandon)

10.Fighting Kit Carson (Johnny Mack Brown)

11.Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe (Buster Crabbe)

12.The Green Archer (Victory Jory)

13.Jungle Girl (Frances Gifford)

14.Jungle Jim (Grant Withers & Raymond Hatton)

15.Lost City of the Jungle (Russell Hayden & Keye Luke)

16.Mandrake the Magician (Warren Hull & Dick Curtis)

17.Miracle Rider (Tom Mix & Tony Jr)

18.The Painted Stallion (Ray "Crash" Corrigan)

19.The Phantom (Tom Tyler)

20.The Return of Chandu (Bela Lugosi)

21.Riders of Death Valley (Dick Foran, Leo Carrillo & Buck Jones)

22.Secret Agent X-9 (1937) (Scott Kolk & Henry Brandon)

23.Secret Agent X-9 (1945) (Lloyd Bridges & Keye Luke)

24.Sky Raiders (Donald Woods & Billy Halop)

25.Undersea Kingdom (Ray "Crash" Corrigan)

26.Winners of the West (Dick Foran, Harry Woods, Roy Barcroft & Charles Stevens)

27.Zane Greys "King of the Royal Mounted" (Allan "Rocky" Lane)

28.Zorro's Cliffhanger Collection (Reed Hadley, John Carroll & Linda Stirling)

Great job by VCI Entertainment for releasing "Red Barry" (1938), the digital transfere with a clean, clear and crisp print...looking forward to more high quality releases from the vintage serial era of the '30s, '40s & '50s...order your copy now from Amazon or VCI Entertainment where there are plenty of copies available on VHS, stay tuned once again for top notch action mixed with deadly adventure from the "King of Serials" VCI...just the way we like 'em

Total Time: 240 mins on 2 VHS ~ VCI Entertainment 1770 ~ (11/01/2000)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fine Transfer of a Well-Made Serial, October 6, 2010
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This review is from: Red Barry (DVD)
"Red Barry" is a 13-chapter serial from Universal released in 1938, starring Larry "Buster" Crabbe and directed by Ford Beebe and Alan James, based on a newspaper comic strip by Will Gould that was one of several intended to compete with "Dick Tracy." Universal's effort was likely "inspired" by Republic's serials based on the better-known strip.

The plot involves two million dollars in bonds, supplied by Russia to an unnamed country under siege and entrusted to an oriental importer, Wing Fu (Syril Delevanti) to be taken to the United States for the purchase of airplanes. Back in the U.S., "crack police agent" Red Barry is investigating a series of murders taking place in Chinatown. Wing Fu feels that while Red Barry could be a useful ally, he could also be a problem, because the purchase of warplanes is in violation of the United States' neutrality in the conflict. But there are other people after the bonds; underworld chieftain Quong Lee (Frank Lackteen), and a Russian dancer named Natacha (Edna Sedgwick) who claims the money is rightfully hers. Red Barry has problems of his own with the Police Commissioner (William Gould) who takes him off the Chinatown Murders in favor of bumbling British "scientific detective" Valentine Vane (Hugh Huntley). But with the help of his boss, Inspector Scott (Wade Boteler) and female newspaper reporter Mississippi (Frances Robinson) Red Barry continues his investigation of both the murders and the stolen bonds.

The story has a complicated bunch of characters, of more depth than usual for serial movies. There is no clear division between "good guys" and "bad guys" since those after the bonds are all operating outside the law, to varying degrees, and each employs some thugs to further their efforts. It is unfortunate that the writers didn't lavish as much attention on the basic plot mover; pursuit of the bonds gets old in a hurry, and some of the plot twists don't make a lot of sense. The confusion as to who has the bonds extends to the written "recap" titles at the beginning of the chapters which are occasionally wrong. The cliffhangers are not elaborate, and sometimes uninspired; two chapters in a row have Red Barry dropped through the same trap door, though it is supposed to be in different locations. And dumping Buster Crabbe in the harbor is not likely to help the evildoers any more than releasing the lions did in Clyde Beatty's serials. But by serial movie standards the acting is good; special mention should be made of Philip Ahn as "Hong Kong Cholly," a friend of Red Barry who has to work against him at times. The action is fairly lively, with only short sections of padding, mostly by means of the performances in a Vaudeville theatre. It holds interest best if watched one chapter at a time, making the struggle for possession of the bonds seem less redundant.

VCI's edition on DVD, # 8585 is supplied on two discs, with a pamphlet having background information on the comic strip and the serial. The transfer is a remarkably good, sharp and clear, to the point where significant difference can be seen between the material created for the serial and the many pieces of "stock" footage. A few "frozen frames" are seen in a couple chapters possibly to cover film damage, but the overall picture quality is impressive, much cleaner than the earlier edition on VHS. The titles are rock steady and quite clean. But all chapters have the same MPPDA Certificate number, 4292; in 1938 individual numbers were assigned to each chapter, as they were in the VHS edition with a couple exceptions. Still, the editing has title pictures of the main characters only on the first three chapters, standard at the time for Universal serials, and the sound appears to be the original for each of them. The sound is fairly good, though some distortion is present, noticed especially in the title music of some of the chapters, but it never gets bad enough to be a problem during the dialogue.

So a good serial, if not a really great one, with many well-known character actors and a plot that is complex enough to maintain interest, and the price for two discs with excellent transfer quality is a bargain.

Note that while my review appears under more than one edition, it was for the DVD, which as noted has a LOT cleaner picture, and crisper sound than VCI's old one on VHS.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Cops 'n Robbers Serial, November 25, 2010
This review is from: Red Barry (DVD)
In-between outer space jaunts as comic strip heroes Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers, Olympic swimming champion-turned-movie-star Larry "Buster" Crabbe headlined another action-packed cliffhanger serial based on a classic newspaper comic: RED BARRY (1938).

Crabbe portrays the titular Barry, a two-fisted, rule-breaking cop whose beat is Chinatown (which means, of course, lots of occidental actors in Asian make-up and rather offensive pidgin English). The plot is typical chapterplay hokum with various factions (the Mob, Chinese agents, Russians, etc.) all trying to steal - and then keep - two million dollars in bonds. There's the requisite number of car chases, fistfights and shootouts, and throughout it all, the charismatic Crabbe remains a tough and impressively athletic hero.

Based on the popular, but now nearly-forgotten, comic strip of the same name, created by cartoonist Will Gould as a competitor for Chester Gould's (no relation) more famous Dick Tracy, RED BARRY was the fortieth sound serial produced by Universal Studios, and the third of five in which Crabbe starred. It's ably directed by veterans Forde Beebe and Alan James, but falls into the same pattern as most cop & robbers serials, with lots of repetitive action and unproductive running back-and-forth. Still, this is really only bothersome if you try to watch the whole 13 chapters in one sitting -- and that's not how these films were meant to be experienced.

Never before available on disc, VCI's new 2-disc DVD includes all 13 chapters and sports a remarkable 1.331 full-frame transfer from a high quality source. Contrast is good, and the overall quality (aside from some of the stock footage) is excellent. The image is virtually free of blemishes, specks or dirt, and considering the serial's vintage, looks terrific.The only extras are a still gallery, promos for other VCI serial releases, and extensive, informative liner notes by Clifford Weimer.

For Buster Crabbe fans and serial buffs, RED BARRY is highly recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Just plain fun, November 2, 2010
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This review is from: Red Barry (DVD)
For me Buster Crabbe is just plain cool. This serial is evidence of that. It's action oriented and just plain fun. It's hard to watch just one episode. This is not academy award winning stuff but like I said it was made for fun entertainment. The cliff-hangers are crazy at times but they do keep you going to the next episode to find out what happens. Best of all. I love Fedora hats and this serial is full of them (Icing on the cake). This serial was made in 1938. So there are also lots of cool old cars as well.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Red Barry, April 28, 2014
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This review is from: Red Barry (DVD)
I watched this as a kid and have been trying to find it for years to find it. I finally found it at Amazon. If you are a fan of the old movie 1930/1940's serials you like this one. Especially if you liked Larry Buster Crabb.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Red Barry or Flash Gordon, March 19, 2013
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This review is from: Red Barry (DVD)
Buster Crabbe was the king of the cliffhangers. He played Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers, Tarzan, and now Red Barry. How many actors can say they played so many comic book characters. Red Barry is a great detective yarn and very exciting. Not many people liked it, but I did. I just like cliffhangers good or bad. Buster Crabbe was the best.
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5.0 out of 5 stars RED BARRY, June 19, 2011
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This review is from: Red Barry (DVD)
VCI REALLY GOT THIS ONE RIGHT. A NICE RE-MASTERED COPY OF THIS SERIAL IS WHAT COLLECTOR'S WERE LOOKING FOR,FOR YEARS MANY COLLECTORS WERE WATCHING A VERY GRAINY COPY THAT WAS THE ONLY WAY YOU COULD WATCH IT.
IT'S NICE TO SEE BUSTER CRABBE IN A SUIT CHASING AFTER CRIMINALS INSTEAD OF FLYING AROUND ON A SPACESHIP,NOT THAT I DON'T LIKE HIM DOING THAT ALSO. THIS IS A ACTOR WHO TOOK HIS WORK SERIOUS,NOT THE GREATEST OF ACTORS BUT WHAT HE DID HE DID IT RIGHT.
IF YOU PURCHASE THIS SERIAL YOU WILL GET A EXCELLENT PRINT THAT IS MUCH MORE FUN TO WATCH. THIS SERIAL ALSO CO-STARS FRANCES ROBINSON WHO WAS ALSO IN A RE-MASTED SERIAL TIM TYLER'S LUCK SHE WAS A UNIVERSAL CONTRACT PLAYER WHO ALSO CAN BE SEEN IN TOWER OF LONDON (UNIVERSAL 1939).
THE ARTWORK ON THE BOX AND THE INSIDE ARE EXCELLENT. BEING A COLLECTOR OF SERIALS SINCE THE VHS CAME TO BE I'M PROUD TO ADD THIS TO MY COLLECTION.
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Red Barry
Red Barry by Alan James (DVD - 2010)
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