People are voting emotionally.
I really wanted to like this movie. I feel terribly cynical trashing it, and that's why I'm giving it a middling 5. Actually, I'm giving it a 5 because there were some superb performances.
Yo, there's no way for me to review this film without saying, take your *insert ethnicity + "ass" here* to see this film,like now. You have to see it in order to know what you're really messing with.
It's the kind of movie you'll want to see a second time with someone who hasn't seen it yet, to remember what it was like to watch it for the first time.
***SPOILERS*** I've reviewed a bunch of these, and I see them on METV, usually just before I do. Nonetheless, i invested in the entire series from AMAZON, and I'm glad I did. There have been some very good opinions of this show published by IMDb, and I actually only found fault with one. Let's just take a brief look at this very fine program.It was a very long-running series for it's time, and even now. It had the same main characters (mostly) in the same roles, week after week. Three was a hiccup with William Talmann, and four weak episodes when Raymond was out sick. Also, those were the days when they actually expected The show members to put in a serious work schedule for a year; unlike today, where you're lucky to get a dozen episodes a year from them. The office setting did not change in all the time the series ran. This is ridiculous. I've given my opinion of the office decor, and the reason for that opinion in other reviews, so, I won't go into it here except to say it looks like it was borrowed from a department store window. Della should have been taking notes almost any time she and Perry were interviewing clients; I've covered this, too. This is a character driven drama wherein, the viewer is compelled to care about the main characters, and only SOMETIMES, the clients. There are exceptions: Almost always beautiful women. This point brings up another one. WHY were so many of these talented, beautiful actresses paired with goofy looking, older weirdos? My theory is simple. To give us older, goofy looking weirdos hope; fleeting, but so it is with hope.Next question is: WHY are so many of Perry's clients stupid? That's a good question, too. Probably to show off why emotion should never control our lives. Also, in a few cases, the clients ARE genuinely stupid. No doubt, some really are. Some make dumb mistakes, but are explainable for honorable, or misunderstood ends, but a few are truly idiotic. The main lesson? don't let emotion guide your life (good luck).The reason Perry wins. Besides the fact that he has a loyal, dependable, intelligent and skilled team, there remains the fact that he is a legal genius. If you watch these episodes, you'll see several times when Perry is dictating a legal brief, or business letter to a client concerning economic, or financial law. He is then, somehow, pulled away to defend someone in need. A favorite way, is Della getting him to rescue the damsel in distress. I love those stories. He mainly is a criminal defense attorney as a hobby. Just look at how many times his clients just can't pay him, or pay him a pittance of what they owe. My theory is that he is a high priced litigator (shark), who is very wealthy due to his unequaled legal expertise. He makes Burger crazy just for the fun of it.Next point would be the almost inevitable "Happy Ending". This is a very large worm in the nice, red apple. Frankly, back then, I guess we somehow needed the "all is well with the world" stopping point, but this is a flaw in my opinion, and if I see it coming, I'll usually turn off the show. There ARE some great ending lines, but some are disgusting drivel.I think Perry is so popular today (and according to IMDb, GAINING in fans) because so many of us are retired, and we want a good show to watch on T.V., rather than what seems to pass for entertainment today. This is a high quality drama that is one of the greats. A real treasure, that a lot of us had to miss to do homework, fight with our siblings, collect our paper routes, play with our friends. I'm sure it's all coming back to you now, isn't it?? This show is a consistent 10.
If there is such a thing as peaceful crime drama, "Perry Mason" fits the bill. Mark this up to a commitment to an indefinable human quality, and a non-divisive stance. Which equate to an appealing sensibility (that weakens in the final season). "Perry Mason" is nearly as absorbing and comforting as "Sherlock Holmes." The viewer can't help but sense that she or he is in good hands. Each episode is like a favorite book by a familiar and trusted author. And holding down the center of this remarkable draw is Mason himself (Raymond Burr) who bears his considerable authority with utmost grace. He insists on the honesty of his clients which he exacts through direct eye contact and his own sense of justice. He wins and wins, of course, but he never gloats. His very subtle, knowing smile is never offensive, never provocative, and not even that challenging--it's a smile of self-assurance, of being in touch with himself, the case, and the greater world. He even sympathizes with certain of the guilty whom he must expose to save his innocent client. In a real sense, "Perry Mason," works so well because of what it refuses to do. It eschews hurtful stereotypes, cruelty, sarcasm, violence, tough cops, macho, sex exploitation, patriotism (as in "Dragnet"), hit men, and shoot outs. There's no pretension in this semi-noir world, nor is there any excess, posturing or harsh humor. In fact, there is something consistently adult in the whole scheme, some light but serious touch which might be akin to "The Honeymooners" on TV's comedy front. I think the subsequent Burr crime series, "Ironsides," is not, as many say, a continuance of "PM" but rather a discontinuance. Most of what "PM" rejects, "Ironsides" readily accepts, as do almost all other TV crime dramas thenceforth. Which only serves to underscore the special achievement of "PM." Which is based on a subdued sense of drama, characterization over action, and fairly convincing and intricate plots. Yes, each of its countless episodes requires a corpse; but, as far as the viewer is concerned, it might be some single stuffed dummy appropriately positioned and made-up to match the specific drama. For "Perry Mason" is non-violent in almost every sense of the word. Della Street(Barbara Hale)sees to that.
Here's the deal.In September of 1957, CBS television began broadcasting Perry Mason, starring Raymond Burr. The title character was a fictional lawyer made popular by author Erle Stanley Gardner in a series of novels in the 1930s. There had been a half-dozen Perry Mason films and a long-running radio program. Gardner hated them. But he had signed away creative control on the lure of a barrelful of money, and which of us hasn't done that? I would, for a hoot.Twenty years later, the new medium of television brought new contracts with new terms. Gardner could now show Mason the way he wanted – a bold knight of the courtroom, besting the foes of honest men and women, his only weapon a sharp mind, his only shield the law.Perry Mason the TV show was an immediate hit. It had stylish sets, expensive out-of-studio production costs, solid acting, writing and directing, and, best of all, showcased a steady stream of handsome actors and beautiful Hollywood starlets. It set a high standard for all the legal American television shows to follow, from Burr's own Ironside in the 1970s to today's fifteen or so Law and Order franchises.While the show's black-and-white format might turn off some, most viewers appreciate the noir flavor of bygone Hollywood glamour.Perry Mason is an American icon, both national and personal. This show has been on in the background of my life for over five decades. Yet until last year, 2015 (pause) I'd never seen a complete episode.It was always a show I meant to watch, but since it was always there, what's the hurry? It was background video, the way Friends would be for another generation. Perry Mason, along with Gilligan's Island, was one of the great "filler shows" in early cable television. When 24-hour cable television debuted in the late 70s, programmers had a dilemma: There wasn't enough programming to fill all the time. One hour-long Perry Mason reruns helped fill the void.Unfortunately, Perry Mason's popularity also made it a victim. The original programs ran a fat 52-53 minutes, leaving a scant seven to eight minutes for commercials. Cable advertisers demand more time to sell more junk. So the shows are sliced, diced and time-compressed to fit a new market. Last year I watched a PM on a "hallmark" mystery channel, and I swear it had a whopping 20-22 minutes of advertising packed in. How? By cutting out whole scenes and characters. But beginning in 2006, DVDs offered a return to the original intent of the lawyer.On January 1, 2016 I resolved to watch all 271 episodes of the CBS- TV Perry Mason show. The gift of modern technology makes this project most achievable and pleasant. A fella, an ambitious fella, can own the set of the entire nine seasons, 72 disks, for a mere $150. If you don't care to spend that much, there are a couple of alternatives.First, there's a stream available on CBS Online for about $7 a month. I tried that for a while but didn't like it. Here on the Montana range, my internet speed via Charter Communications is about 62 mbps, apparently not enough to prevent image buffering, so the shows flicker and repeat themselves, like an old film. Moreover, CBS only offered the first five seasons, and not even all episodes. That seems odd.You might find some of the DVDs at the library, but its a bit bothersome. In the end, possession is nine-tenths of the fun.http://www.littlebigtownmt.com/
In reality, if the D.A. & Chief Detective in this series would have lost as many cases as they did...they wouldn't have a job. All you have to do is look at how many episodes the DA was in and how many Lt. Tragg were in a if you can add...they pretty much have the worst track record for solving and prosecuting crimes.I think for me that's the first thing I see when I watch this series. A not real bright D.A. and a Detective who doesn't trust anything Perry Mason says or does and he loses every single time. You'd think they'd give ole Perry a break but nope, they're just as leery and un-trusting as always.For the time, this show was what TV really needed. It has a crime, an investigation and a conclusion...and normally the ending was with the admitted suspect decrying how wrong he was and admits remorse. This was typical 50's fare. Admit your sins...repent so the viewers won't go out and do wrong (basically set an example).Don't get me wrong, my quibbles with this show are minor but to me, if you wanna see a great show about a lawyer you should try Matlock. It has comedy and drama when it's needed. This show probably deserves it's rating but to me it was a typical 50's drama. Problem is, all those 50's dramas seemed the same to me.