15 user 4 critic

Trapped by Television (1936)

Approved | | Drama | 15 June 1936 (USA)
An inventor looking for backing for his television invention gets involved with a crooked businessman and gangsters who try to steal his invention.



(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »

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Cast overview:
Barbara 'Bobby' Blake
Fred Dennis
Rocky O'Neil
Mae Collins
John Curtis
Paul Turner


An inventor looking for backing for his television invention gets involved with a crooked businessman and gangsters who try to steal his invention. Written by <Brian@earthlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Electrifying entertainment...a leap ahead of tomorrow...as science exposes "the perfect racket!" (original poster) See more »








Release Date:

15 June 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Caught by Television  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


J.W. Greggs - Collection Agency Manager: [on the telephone] It ain't the policy of the Acme to threaten people. But if you don't kick in with that dough fast, I'm coming up there myself and smack you right on the button!
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User Reviews

Historically interesting 30's potboiler
26 November 2014 | by See all my reviews

Trapped by Television equates to a bit more than most 30's cinematic potboilers. It may include a number of the tropes that genre films from that decade usually have but it is distinct in that it is quite historically interesting. The reason for this is that it depicts a 30's view of television – a technology that hadn't actually happened at that point in time yet. Interestingly, the film speculates that these devices would not only be able to receive signals but to transmit them as well. To this end we have an inventor devise an elaborate art deco TV that can do just this. The plot-line surrounding this has him needing financial backing and going to a shady businessman, while a gang of criminals gets involved seeing this new invention as a potentially massive money-maker.

It's actually quite a decent premise for one of these flicks, given that, as we all know perfectly well, television would soon go on to be perhaps the most successful and influential technological development of the 20th century and the depiction of how it could work in this movie is charming and entertainingly quaint. Aside from all this, the plot-line still has the usual requisite elements seen in umpteen films from the period such as a male/female duo, a comedy-relief character – in this case a science-loving debt collector and dastardly villains. And to top it all off, it rounds off with a satisfying extended fight sequence and there's really nothing wrong with that either.

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