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George Peppard debuts as Thomas Banacek in this highly entertaining
pilot film to the subsequent TV series, as he plays a freelance
Boston-based insurance investigator who goes to Texas to look into the
mysterious disappearance of an armored car carrying Gold Bullion. Where
did it go in the middle of the desert? Answer is most satisfying, as
are the twists and turns in the plot.
Peppard portrays Banacek with the remarkable confidence(hated by his rivals!) but undeniable intelligence and moral conviction he would carry over into the (too brief) TV series. We are also introduced to his chauffeur Jay Drury(played nicely by Ralph Manza), confidant Felix Mulholland(the wonderful veteran actor Murray Matheson) and Carlie Kirkland,(Christine Belford, charmed by Banacek despite her resentment.)
How to do a pilot film right!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is not a TV movie, but an episode, a pilot one for the series.
Nevertheless a good episode, talkative with a few action, but inventive.
Banacek - a mix up between private investigator and bounty hunter - go for search about a vanishing armored truck in the middle of the desert. Of course he faces the local population: sheriff, drunken guys, Indian worker just out of jail and a big land owner. The prime suspect, of course.
For me, it is not a TV movie. I guess the other episodes look the same.
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