(Review originally written at 27 September 2008)

Being a good close personal friend of Peter Falk, Patrick McGoohan was once more given the director's chair for this movie. Besides that, he also stars in it again as the movie its killer, opposite Peter Falk, like he had already done before in some previous Columbo movies entries.

Overall I have always liked Patrick McGoohan's directing jobs for the Columbo movies, with the exception of the failed 'different' experimental Columbo movie entry "Columbo: Last Salute to the Commodore". This movie also isn't THE best directed Columbo movie by McGoohan but it simply is a worthy entry, that follows the usual successful formula. His movies always had a good style of its own as well, which always made them pleasant as well as a bit more interesting than the average Columbo movie entry to watch.

But he foremost is of course a great actor. He doesn't star in that many movies and my guess is that he has also had a bigger career in the theater. He is a great actor and he also shared some good chemistry in his sequences with Peter Falk. They always have been good playing opposite each other. The movie also features Arthur Hill in a small role. It was his last movie role before he went into retirement. The rest of the supporting cast is pretty bad however, which is a real shame and somewhat degrades the movie but the problem is not too serious though and you should still be able to enjoy this movie as much as basically any other Columbo movie.

The pace for this movie is rather slow but it's pleasantly slow. It allows its story to develop nicely and it also allows Peter Falk to really shine playing his well known Lt. Columbo character. It's a movie that gets filled with some trademark Columbo-humor, which is really mostly thanks to the way Peter Falk plays the character.

The story isn't anything too special but it's the type of story which works very effectively for a Columbo movie. It progresses- and features all of the usual ingredients that are custom for a Columbo movie. It's all quite solid for a murder-mystery and it also has some nice dialog in it. The story of course leaves out some clues for the Lieutenant but it aren't stupid clues. The killer in the movie is intelligent and the murder is well and cleverly planned and executed. But of course in the end he is no match for the somewhat peculiar Lt. Columbo, who as always is playing dumber than he of course in fact is, in order to get closer to- and 'trick' his main suspect.

A good Columbo entry set in the dirty world of politics.


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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