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on September 13, 2002
Of all the many tapes that I have purchased over the years, this one was one of the most poorly transferred from the original film that I have ever seen. I remembered this serial from my youth, and had hoped to refresh some fond memories and share them with my grandchildren. Unfortunately, the constant flickering of the screen and the poor sound quality don't allow me to do that. I would not recommend this tape to anyone until it is "cleaned up" and restored or at least improved.
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HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICEon February 28, 2006
VCI Entertainment and Universal Pictures present based on the comic strip by Lyman Young by King Feature Syndicate..."Tim Tyler's Luck" (1937) (Dolby digitally remastered), a 12 Chapter cliffhanger from an action packed Universal serial era featuring an outstanding cast with Ford Beebe and Wyndham Gittens at the helm....story line and plot has Tim Tyler (Frankie Thomas) searching for his father Prof. James Tyler (Al Shean) a famous scientist, Tim embarks into gorilla country in Africa with danger at every turn...our cast seems to be having a blast with each cliffhanger episode keeping you on the edge of your seat...what part does Lora Lacey (Francis Robinson), Spider Webb (Norman Willis) and Tim play in this exciting jungle serial of Universal's best since "Flash Gordon" and "Buck Rogers"...will Tim's father survive the treacherous jungle of the Dark Continent and those who inhabit it's surroundings...can Lora Lacey with Tim's help bring in Spider Webb to stand trail for the crime Lora's brother is serving time for...is there any justice within the 12 chapters Universal's cast and crew is facing...don't leave the theater until the final chapter is over and done with "The Kimberley Diamonds"....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 Wyndham Gittens, associate producer Henry MacRae and Elmer Tambert, original story & screenplay by Wyndham Gittens, Norman S. Hall and Ray Trampe, musical score by Franz Waxman, Charles Previn, William Schiller and Clifford Vaughan, stunts by Eddie Parker and Tom Steele...the cast includes Frankie Thomas (Tim Tyler), Frances Robinson (Lora Lacey), Jack Mulhall (Sgt. Gates), Al Shean (Prof. James Tyler), Norman Willis (Spider Webb), Anthony Warde (Garry Drake), Earl Douglas (Jules Lazarre), William "Billy" Benedict (Spud), Frank Mayo (Jim Conway), Alan Gregg (Brent-henchman), Pat J. O'Brien (Patrolman Barry), Stanley Blystone (Capt. Clark), Everett Brown (Native Henchman Mogu), Al Bridge (Capt. Trowbridge), Lane Chandler (Patrolman Kelly), William Desmond (Dock Official), Tom Steele (Ivory Patrolman), Eddie Parker (henchman), Kenneth Harlan (Spencer, Trader).....special footnote, some veteran actors of the '30s, '40s and '50s grace this feature with Al Bridge, William Desmond, Lane Chandler, Forbes Murray, all made their mark in the B-Westerns and Serial Department....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. Jungle Pirates

2. Dead Man's Pass

3. Into the Lion's Den

4. The Ivory Trail

5. Trapped in the Quicksands

6. Jaws of the Jungle

7. King of the Gorillas

8. The Spider Caught

9. The Gates of Doom

10.A Race for Fortune

11.No Man's Lands

12.The Kimberley Diamonds

BONUS FEATURES:

1. Video Interview with star Frankie Thomas in 2005.

2. Original theatrical trailer.

3. Classic Cliffhanger Trailers

4. Chapter Selections

BIOS:

1. Frankie Thomas (Frank M. Thomas)

Birth Date: 4/09/1921 - New York, New York

Died: Still Living

2. Frances Robinson

Birth Date: 4/26/1916 - Fort Wandsworth, New York

Died: 8/16/1971 - Los Angeles, CA

3. Norman Willis

Birth Date: 5/27/1903 - Chicago, Illinois

Died: 1/27/1988 - Los Angeles, CA

4. Ford I. Beebe (Director)

Birth Date: 11/26/1888 - Grand Rapids, Michigan

Died: 11/26/1978 - Lake Elisnore, CA

5. Wyndham Gittens (Director)

Birth Date: 2/07/1885 - Barbados, West Indies

Died: 6/18/1967 - Dunedin, Florida

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 "Tim Tyler's Luck" (1937), 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: 251 mins on 2 DVD ~ VCI Entertainment 8438 ~ (2/28/2006)
0Comment|17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on June 27, 2011
"Tim Tyler's Luck" is a 12-chapter Universal serial from 1937 based on the comic strip created by Lyman Young, directed Ford Beebe and Wyndham Gittens.

Tim Tyler (Frankie Thomas) is in Africa searching for his father (Al Shean), and stows away on a riverboat. Lora Lacey (Frances Robinson) is also doing some searching, but for an evildoer named "Spider" Webb (Norman Willis), one of whose crimes has wrongly landed her brother in prison. She finds that Webb's chief henchman, Garry Drake (Anthony Warde) is also on the boat. Unfortunately, Drake figures out who she is and secures the door of her cabin with a rope. He then has his gang murder the captain and crew, and they are about to do the same to Ms. Lacey but Tim Tyler has unroped her cabin door, and they escape. Drake and his men make off with the cargo of ammunition and guns, loading them into the tank-like "Jungle Cruiser" when Spider Webb arrives. They are pursuing Tim and Lora when The Ivory Patrol shows up, led by Sergeant Gates (Jack Mulhall). Tim says the Jungle Cruiser is his father's invention so he may be getting close to his goal.

Fairly typical of 1930's jungle pictures, there are attacks on ivory caravans by rock-throwing gorillas, hostile natives said to be led by a white ruler, instant-suck-down quicksand, an "elephant graveyard" with a vast fortune in ivory, Tim befriending wild animals and being rescued by them, and so on. Not bad of its kind, and something other than fist fights to provide the action. 16-year-old Frankie Thomas is quite good as the title character; you'd think he actually believes it's all happening as shown. Frances Robinson gets involved in the action, more than just being imperiled by gorillas of various types including Anthony Warde, in one of his early roles, already having his familiar nasty character in place. Norman Willis is suitably cold and ruthless as Spider Webb, and Jack Mulhall looks just like he always does, though it works well as Sergeant Gates. As usual in jungle pictures, we get a lot of stock footage, some of it old enough to vote when the serial was made, of lions, panthers, crocodiles, elephants and other wildlife. The dialogue is good, far more believable than the gorillas, and the serial has a well-made, polished look, quite a contrast with what Universal usually had a few years later.

VCI's DVD edition, # 8438 is on two discs, the second having only the last two chapters plus the "extras." The image is good with adequate gray scale and sharpness, if a little grainy, and the focus at the edge remains sharp so likely from a 35mm print, if a reissue, opening with a woeful "Sherman S. Krellberg and Joseph Harris Present" title. The redone main titles have grainy, still-frame background pictures, unevenly illuminated; fortunately the rest of the credits look far better and appear to be as originally issued, though quite possibly with some "restoration" through multiple sources. In the first three chapters, where pictures of the main actors appear with their credits, there is an abrupt change in the music, and while not unusual for Universal's serials the image seems a little less sharp than the rest of the credits. Chapters Four and beyond just list the cast without pictures, and the music isn't disrupted. There is a lot of distortion in the opening music, but far less during the chapters.

The most interesting of the "extras" is a 2005 interview of Frankie Thomas. There are "Bios" of Thomas, Frances Robinson, Anthony Warde and directors Ford Beebe and Wyndham Gittens. Eleven pictures are in a "Photo Gallery," nine production stills plus two movie posters, one in color. The original theatrical trailer is included, along with trailers for three other serials available from VCI: "The Oregon Trail," "Riders of Death Valley" and "Captain Video."

This is a fine edition from a good print, with the exception of the opening titles. Watched one chapter at a time, it keeps the many chases by the Ivory Patrol from seeming too repetitious, and the plot otherwise maintains interest.
0Comment|5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 6, 2014
This is the one.........the Armored Car rolling through the Jungle. The Ivory Patrol, the bad guys. Just a great
story.....about the lost dad and the young boy, doing manly things. Every Boy Scout in America should be required
to watch this series.
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HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICEon November 15, 2005
VCI Entertainment and Universal Pictures present based on the comic strip by Lyman Young by King Feature Syndicate..."Tim Tyler's Luck" (1937) (Dolby digitally remastered), a 12 Chapter cliffhanger from an action packed Universal serial era featuring an outstanding cast with Ford Beebe and Wyndham Gittens at the helm....story line and plot has Tim Tyler (Frankie Thomas) searching for his father Prof. James Tyler (Al Shean) a famous scientist, Tim embarks into gorilla country in Africa with danger at every turn...our cast seems to be having a blast with each cliffhanger episode keeping you on the edge of your seat...what part does Lora Lacey (Francis Robinson), Spider Webb (Norman Willis) and Tim play in this exciting jungle serial of Universal's best since "Flash Gordon" and "Buck Rogers"...will Tim's father survive the treacherous jungle of the Dark Continent and those who inhabit it's surroundings...can Lora Lacey with Tim's help bring in Spider Webb to stand trail for the crime Lora's brother is serving time for...is there any justice within the 12 chapters Universal's cast and crew is facing...don't leave the theater until the final chapter is over and done with "The Kimberley Diamonds"....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 Wyndham Gittens, associate producer Henry MacRae and Elmer Tambert, original story & screenplay by Wyndham Gittens, Norman S. Hall and Ray Trampe, musical score by Franz Waxman, Charles Previn, William Schiller and Clifford Vaughan, stunts by Eddie Parker and Tom Steele...the cast includes Frankie Thomas (Tim Tyler), Frances Robinson (Lora Lacey), Jack Mulhall (Sgt. Gates), Al Shean (Prof. James Tyler), Norman Willis (Spider Webb), Anthony Warde (Garry Drake), Earl Douglas (Jules Lazarre), William "Billy" Benedict (Spud), Frank Mayo (Jim Conway), Alan Gregg (Brent-henchman), Pat J. O'Brien (Patrolman Barry), Stanley Blystone (Capt. Clark), Everett Brown (Native Henchman Mogu), Al Bridge (Capt. Trowbridge), Lane Chandler (Patrolman Kelly), William Desmond (Dock Official), Tom Steele (Ivory Patrolman), Eddie Parker (henchman), Kenneth Harlan (Spencer, Trader).....special footnote, some veteran actors of the '30s, '40s and '50s grace this feature with Al Bridge, William Desmond, Lane Chandler, Forbes Murray, all made their mark in the B-Westerns and Serial Department....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. Jungle Pirates
2. Dead Man's Pass
3. Into the Lion's Den
4. The Ivory Trail
5. Trapped in the Quicksands
6. Jaws of the Jungle
7. King of the Gorillas
8. The Spider Caught
9. The Gates of Doom
10.A Race for Fortune
11.No Man's Lands
12.The Kimberley Diamonds

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 "Tim Tyler's Luck" (1937), 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: 230 mins on 2 VHS ~ VCI Entertainment 1758 ~ (11/01/2000)
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on October 28, 2011
If you are a serial lover as I am this was just wonderful, well done, clear video and sound. Brought back great memories of my childhood as I waited for each new episode, just wonderful.
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on October 18, 2013
I have the VCR version and now bought the DVD. I saw this years ago, when I was younger, and was happy to know, years later, that I was able to buy it.
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on March 7, 2016
just like I remembered it.I watch one chapter a week as if I was still young.
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on February 7, 2016
Saw these as a kid .
Hokey but still fun.
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on August 21, 2009
You have to remember the audience serials were produced for,these chapter plays of the 30s and 40s were intended to provide customer value,real or perceived between double features which were very common in those days.They were very popular with kids during the matinees but were also shown in the evening where adults liked them or used them as break time along with a cartoon,News of the day,short(think 3 Stooges)and next weeks coming attractions.All for .15cents or up to .75 cents depending on what years and/or location. This Tim Tyler serial is in my opinion about average for the genre.Do not be looking for Academy Award material here and sometimes not even good B movie production values,many fans of the genre ignore some of the gaffs&goofs that were not unusual in these pictures and the number of fans may surprise you.These serials still command from $5.95 up to $29.95 for the most popular today.Fun and/or nostalgia drive the continued interest in these "cliffhangers",again this serial is about average.
0Comment|2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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