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Columbo: Mystery Movie Collection 1990
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Universal has been releasing the Columbo - Mystery Movie Collection on DVD. This DVD boxed set continues where the last one left off with installments that were produced in the 1990s. When I initially posted this review, I made an error and listed the episodes expected in the NEXT DVD boxed set, not this one. Thanks to Mike, Tom and Michael Todd for correcting this information.
For some viewers, these latter installments of the dirty-trench-coat-wearing, cigar-smoking sleuth are less satisfying and well-crafted than the original series, but for me, ANY Columbo is better than 99 percent of the current TV roster.
The six mysteries in this boxed set were the last to be produced in the miniseries format, meaning the episodes each run about two hours, while the remaining Columbo mysteries produced were originally shown as one-shot 90-minute movie length specials and are yet to be released on DVD.
Collected here are:
Columbo Cries Wolf (which originally aired Jan. 20, 1990): Two true iconic soap opera actors, Ian Buchanan and Deidra Hall, star in this episode as feuding business partners. Hall ends up dead and Columbo has to use all of his skills to "uncover" the crime.
Agenda for Murder (which aired Feb. 10, 1990): Fabulous actor Patrick McGoohan who has wowed fans since the 1960s Danger Man, is also a close friend of Falk's. That's very lucky for Columbo fans, because he has graced the series with some of the most memorable episodes of the series.Read more ›
There is no way to get back to the main menu after watching an episode. You can not navigate to watch the other episode on the disc. With my DVD player, I must remove the disc, play another disc, remove that one, then put the first disc back to get to the main menu to choose the unseen episode. We thought that there was something wrong with our disc or with the player, until I saw other reviews here.
This is a very poorly presented set - but because I adore Columbo I endure it. Since there are only six movies for 1990, one would think that they could have combined the movies from 1991 to make this a meatier set - but they wouldn't do that, because this way they can milk us fans for all our dollars as much as possible.
It's obvious that the producers have no respect for the buyers, but we love Peter Falk so we suffer gladly, to hear "Just one more thing...."
"Columbo Goes to College" gives us a chance to laugh at two smart-alec kids who, throughout the episode, we know will finally get theirs, and who give us a mocking impression of Columbo that even offends him. "Rest in Peace, Mrs. Columbo," though designed as a gimmick to get more people to watch, actually has some crime-solving expertise that is worthy of "Columbo."
The set, as usual, is poorly and disrespectfully distributed to die-hard fans of Columbo. It is hard to navigate, lacks special features and interviews, and is pretty plain vanilla, though we are, at least, spared the pathetic two-sided DVD's of earlier seasons. I guess they know we will buy these for the sheer joy of watching Columbo, but really wish they had added some special feature to please the fans.
Anyone who loves Columbo will be pleased, at least, with the episodes, which are well-reproduced from a good source, with good sound and picture.
Columbo Cries Wolf
Agenda For Murder
Rest In Peace, Mrs Columbo
Uneasy Lies The Crown
Murder In Malibu
Columbo Goes To College
Another problem, not so much with the show but the 'purchase' is the fact I burned through this in 2 days. So, now I'm expected to wait another year or 2 for another set? I think the price point is fair, but with only 6 episodes it all ends far too quickly. They really need to combine these seasons into '89-'90, '91-'92, etc, or release them faster.
Also, there is no way to get from the episode menu screen back to the main menu without ejecting the disc, no 'return to main menu', if you selected the wrong episode or want to watch both back to back, forget it! The artwork is nice, the disc art is bland ('color discs' is all) and there are exactly ZERO extras which is a shame.. there must be a mountain of interviews out there, and in this case I'd settle for a mole-hill.
Still, having said all this, it's a must own. Columbo's main problem is always having the bar so high we expect it to stay there. Who would have thought the best 'cop show' on TV would never feature the star breaking down a door, having a shoot out, or even handling a gun? No matter what he does, it's gold, whether the perps keep up or not.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I received this DVD so quickly I was surprised. The DVD itself is very good. It is just what I expected.Published 29 days ago by Janine Cole
Wow, they really had no respect for the franchise when they rebooted Columbo. Campy humor, deus ex machina solutions, bad soap star actors (didn't real actors want to be part of... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Kevin Cloud
Another great set of movies featuring the favorite detective of all time - Lt. Columbo. It is a wonderful DVD that arrived quickly and has no issues. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Barbara
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