Dick Tracy Returns (1938)

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Dick Tracy Returns (1938) Poster

Dick Tracy battles spies and saboteurs in his efforts to bring to justice the Stark gang, a criminal family led by the vicious Pa Stark.


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30 September 2017 | Prismark10
| A bad return
Watching the feature film version of Dick Tracy Returns it becomes apparent how departed you are from the comic strip Dick Tracy and how appalling the serials were. It is just difficult to take any of it seriously.

Dick Tracy works for the FBI and he is after Pa Stark, the head of the Stark gang. A rookie FBI agent is shot, but not to worry as Tracy states, he will be fine as he has been placed in an iron lung. The agent dies because no one posted any round the clock guards so Pa Stark sneaked in and pulled the plug on his iron lung.

Then you get a scene of Tracy rounding up some bad guys only for his helper Junior shout 'well done Tracy' enabling the others to attack Tracy and Junior being taken hostage.

It gets better when one bad guy leaves a briefcase with a bomb behind in Tracy's office with Tracy in another room guessing that the bad guy will slip out while leaving his briefcase behind, Junior runs after the bad guy who is getting away in his car, but he manages to throw the briefcase inside the car just before it explodes.

It is all preposterous and silly, even nostalgia cannot save it. Thank goodness for the Warren Beatty version who salvaged Dick Tracy's cinematic reputation.

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