Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Charles Bronson, George Raft
Studio: Wea-des Moines Video Release Date: 08/28/2007
Entertaining Set of Off-Beat 1950s TV Detective Shows
David Bassler | Richmond, VA USA | 05/30/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Interesting set of 1950s TV detective series episodes, many of which haven't been available in DVD format before.
"I'm the Law" featured tough guy George Raft as a two-fisted New York City police detective. The episode included in this set, `The Killer' can be found on other low-budget DVD sets.
"Hollywood Off Beat" aka "Steve Randall" was a short-lived Dumont series starring Melvyn Douglas as a disgraced attorney working as a private investigator while he attempting to be readmitted to the bar. The series only ran for aabout ten episodes and actually had a series finale that included a happy ending. The episode included in this set, the final show in the series, is `The Trial.'
"Police Station" was a 1959 syndicated series that ran for 39 episodes starring prolific character actor Baynes Barron as a police captain in charge of Precinct 11. I haven't been able to figure out the name of this episode; there was no splash panel at the beginning of the show and the DVD doesn't provide any information along those lines. Moreover, the guest stars aren't credited and although familiar faces, I can't remember any of their names.
"Treasury Men in Action" aka "Federal Men" - Charles Bronson stars as an undercover treasury man attempting to infiltrate a vicious gang of hoods in the episode, `The Case of the Deadly Dilemma.'
Although the DVD advertises four TV episodes, there's actually a fifth "bonus" episode from "Racket Squad" starring Reed Hadley with guest villain Douglas Dumbrille. The episode title isn't listed, but I believe it's `Sale Value' since it involves two con-men trying to fleece the owner of a small pottery factory.
In addition to the bonus episode, the distributor of the DVD provides a bit of history behind each of the TV series represented on the disk. Extras inclued a Revlon commercial featuring popular pitch-woman Julia Meade, another make-up commercial featuring Richard Carlson, plus a brief shipboard interview with Bela Lugosi (for no particular reason other than fill up the disk, apparently).
As might be expected for the aging material, the video and audio is somewhat the worse for wear, but certainly viewable, and overall, it's a bit better than similar public-domain material that's on the market. Kudos should go to the distributor for releasing such video rarities. The major drawback is the list price of $19.99, which is ridiculous considering the $6 to $8 price on DVDs covering vintage public domain material. Happily this disc can be purchased used for under four bucks - a bargain considering the rarity of the material contained.