Crime Story (TV Series 1986–1988) Poster

(1986–1988)

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Greatly missed...
Brooklyn-101 February 2000
Crime Story was very probably the best show of its kind ever. Although it ran only two seasons, it boasted a superbly worked story and, without question, the best cast ever assembled for television. Not a big star in the mix, but the finest selection of character actors around. Probably the best conflict ever between two men on screen, Denis Farina as cop Mike Torello, and Anthony Denison as hot-headed mob figure Ray Luca. Luca's rise to power in Chicago and later in Las Vegas is the central plot, with Torello and his task force on target to bring him down. With Torello's every failure to bring Luca to justice, he becomes more frustrated and empassioned, and turns up the heat a notch each time, while Luca dances just beyond his reach, increasingly arrogant in his new-found invincibility.

Along with the well-laid foundation of drama and conflict, there was quite a lot of dark humor, one of the things I liked best about the series. Much of this was provided by John Santucci as Paulie, and Ted Levine as Holman, as Luca's sleazy low-life helpers. One show in particular stands out, in which Luca dispatches Paulie and Holman to go to work at a competitor's casino, to do everything possible to make it lose money. Another great role was Luca's long-suffering wife, Cori, played with shrewish gusto by Johann Carlo.

The first season was superior to the second, mostly because the first was so close to perfect. The second half of the first season, in which Torello follows Luca to Las Vegas, is no less than outstanding. Having seen "Casino",the Martin Scorcese movie from 1995, I was struck by how many similarities there were between that movie and "Crime Story" in Las Vegas.

This show was in reruns on USA ten years ago, for a short time, it seems they only ran the whole series through twice. I did tape it at the time, but have since been able to order the entire series on tape, a ten-cassette set. Although the picture quality is not great (EP mode), I am grateful to have these episodes to watch at all. If anybody ever properly puts this series on video (two episodes per tape, stereo sound), I would be even more grateful. The best television show of the 1980's deserves better!
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10/10
Steel-tough Chicago Cops, Old School justice.
Benjamin Wolfe25 July 2006
I only wish I could rate it higher on the scale than just ten stars.

Talk about a lot of work that went into this one. I actually felt as if I was back in the early sixties when I was watching it. This was masterfully done. The scripting, to me was flawless. The development of the characters, was straight up, right. The scenery, well...brought to you by Good Ole Michael Mann. Largely some of the coolest style and presentation in Television and Cinema that I have seen yet. Mr. Mann brings deep emotional content and sustaining context to what he makes. I was traveling on a short vacation, I stopped into Tower Records in L.A. probably about (1995) and found the complete 'Crime Story' series on VHS for I believe it was merely $60.00 then. Needless to say I bought it. Then later on laser disk, but only found a couple. Now it has been put out on DVD!! Thankyou everyone in charge of production and ownership of the rights and especially WalMart for selling it on-line! Cheaper than when I bought it on VHS even.

Every character together makes the 'tapestry' of the story complete. From the lawyer, David Abrams(Stephen Lang), the ever 'Bad', Ray Luca, to Johnny O'Donnell (David Caruso, now C.S.I.:Miami's Lt. Caine) Pauli Taglia the roly-poly happy go lucky, sometimes fearful,(when running into Turello) sidekick to head man 'Luca'. But, you can't forget (or even try) the king of the street Lt. Mike Turello! Now He's the man!!! His crew, including Big Walter Clemmons, Nate, Joey and of course Danny. All excellent detectives battling highly organized crime (or evil) in their fair city.

The town and all the back ground in the story just rings true to form of that city in that era. The job putting this all together to make it that real, takes incredible work, time, effort, research. Even down to using real 'Morgue footage' actual film stock from 1963 for the real 1960s Chicago look. It was compiled and layered just right.

But then the network that let this epic show, just go, I believe is really stupid. Just like other shows that have had total-life left and yet the network 'lunk-heads' pulled the plug instead of giving some better, (uh hmmm) P.R. than they had done, back then. This show inspired me and my creative mind. I didn't quite know in what way, then, but I know now. I recommend this awesome police-mafia drama, with some comical over tones to those who enjoy wheel made television. (***)

P.S: I just bought the DVD set, and it is still a beauty to behold, now digitally remastered!!!!
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Absolutely riveting crime drama!
Michael O'Keefe23 October 2001
From producer Michael Mann, a brilliant crime drama series that can be mentioned with similar reverence as THE UNTOUCHABLES(TV series)1959-1963. Chicago, Cleveland, St. Louis, Las Vegas...organized crime is spreading its wings. Michael Torello(Dennis Farina)is the head of Chicago's Major Crime Unit and determined to bring down up and coming crime figure Ray Luca(Anthony Denison). The action takes place in the early 60s...and it is very impressive that the clothing, hair styles, automobiles and music are circa 1963. The opening theme is a revved up revised version of Del Shannon's "Runaway". The Torello/Luca relationship may even be more intense than that of Ness/Nitti in THE UNTOUCHABLES. From direction to dialogue; from story line to acting...hard to find fault with one of the best in this genre.

Kudos for strong acting from Stephen Lang, Bill Smitrovich, Andrew Dice Clay, Jon Polito, David Caruso, Ray Sharkey and Joseph Wiseman. Rocker Todd Rundgren is responsible for all original music that drives this 42 episode crime drama.
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Awesome pilot to a great series!
alexmachine21 June 2003
This tv show had it all, great characters played by a fantastic cast, some of the coolest cops and villians you could ever ask for, great music, the cars, the atmosphere and dialogue, and a plot that went way beyond any single episode! It's the story of one cop named Michael Torello (Dennis Farina) who makes it his life's mission to bring down a "ruthless hood" named Ray Luca (Anthony Denison) who is quickly working his way to the top of the Chicago organized crime syndicate. Along the way, you're introduced to other key figures, like Andrew Dice Clay's character Max Goldman and a performance by Joseph Wiseman as Manny Weisbord that stands just as strong as anything The Godfather produced (in my absolutely biased opinion, of course). Don't forget Pauli Taglia, Ray's henchman, and rockin' Frank Holman (the same guy who plays Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs), who bears an intriguing resemblance to the Rev. Horton Heat! The series started in Chicago, migrated to Las Vegas about a third of the way through, and ends in Latin America of all places. I won't give anything away here, but I will warn you that if you see the pilot, you'll want to get your hands on the rest of the series. Unfortunately, that's not as easy. The tapes show up on ebay regularly but aren't cheap. Good news is that Anchor Bay is releasing all the episodes on dvd really soon, so it's probably just better to wait for that. Alot of the tapes were copied in SLP mode anyway, and don't have the best quality. This series has a severe cult following now, even though it only aired for two seasons in the '80s. I introduced my girlfriend at the time to this show, and while she was skeptical at first, by the end she insisted we had to get the rest of the series. You'll watch it over and over again and pick up on stuff you miss everytime, not to mention the stories are just classic and filled to overflowing with one-liners and scenes! Michael Mann is a genius for making this show happen. I hated Miami Vice, but this was just "the greatest thing, since bullets"---Yikes!!!!, I could write on and on about the merits of this series!! It's hard to believe how few people know about Crime Story! Don't be one of those people, check it out!
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Michael Mann's 50s cop series from the eighties
Alex-37230 July 2003
Crime Story was a strange, hard and often inspired tv series from the mid-eighties. It was made by the producer of Miami Vice, Michael Mann, and the cast is stocked with Michael Mann regulars - Stephen Lang, Bill Smitrovitch, Ted Levine and Dennis Farina (all except Ted Levine are in Manhunter).

Although Farina and his crew throughout the series chase after their arch nemesis, Ray Luca and his gang (Pauli Taglia, Frank Holman), the story comes in two parts. The first part, allegedly set in Chicago, the second set in Las Vegas.

Throughout the series, the director tries for a fifties, early sixties feel, even though that's tough to maintain. Great music, every episode is introduced by Del Shannon's "Runaway".

However, very often the focus is the psychological dynamic between Mike Torello (real-life Chicago cop Farina) and Ray Luca (played with a psychopathic coldness by Anthony John Denison). Torello may be on the right side of the law, but there is an equally uneasy quality about the doggedness with which he keeps going after Luca. What would his life be without him? Torello is also frequently tempted to cross the line and behave in a more effective, but illegal way himself.

If you haven't seen it, and you like Wise Guy, or the feel and look Michael Mann gives to his productions, don't miss this series. As this is a classic 80s series, there are also lots of cameos from familiar actors and actresses.
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Why are there not more postings for this awesome show!
jeannie6261 July 2005
I miss it, and it's been nearly 20 years! I'm just surprised there is not a bona-fide cult following for this show! If anyone reading this disagrees, well speak up!! The show premiered when I was a teenager, and I thought it was cool as sh%#! Of course, I was also watching Pee-Wee's playhouse, Joes Bob Briggs Drive-In Theatre, going to see Roy Orbison in concert one last time. And while the addition of cast member Andrew Goldman (Dice-Clay) may not have done much in retrospect for the show, I'll be damned if it didn't prove that he could actually act! I'm not kidding, he did a fine job! Dennis Ferrina, the Maimi Beach widows dream, so my (much older) ex used to tell me... I've been rooting for him ever since this show. (And Midnight Run paid off!)Not sure yet on Law & Order.....
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One of the best shows on TV, bar none.
Nick Zbu15 January 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This is easily one of the greatest shows TV has produced: Dennis Farina shines very brightly in his role here that pretty much solidified his career as a cop both in front of and behind the screen. Every fan of crime drama must go out of their way to get this set and watch it with extreme interest.

There are only two things that may sink the series for some: the ending to the first season was a bit too much (the very ending would have been great if those involved actually perished; a fitting irony) and the second season's ending is a kick in the teeth the way it was presented. I won't ruin it, just watch the whole second season and then watch the finale and tell me you don't feel a tad betrayed on the tone of the final sequence. Yes, it could have worked, but it would have been great to finally ignore the cliffhanger and just go for some sort of closure.

Or at the very least, try to keep it tense and serious as the rest of the series was. But besides this, this is definitely one of TV's finest moments. Perhaps Mann could give us a movie to wrap up the series properly? Dennis Farina and the rest are still living, why not?
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a great series!
dtucker8624 October 2003
Michael Mann is a first class director. He is laser focused and always delivers in spades. He is the genius who directed the tv film The Jericho Mile and the film noir classic with Jimmy Caan Thief. I think he needs to be given credit for this HE DIRECTED THE FILM THAT IS BETTER THEN SILENCE OF THE LAMBS!!!!He directed Manhunter which was so unjustly overlooked when it was released, but has now on DVD been given the credit it deserves. Mann also directed Heat, The Insider and Ali. Before he did that however, he created the classic tv shows Miami Vice and Crime Story. These are the series that made tv crime shows "grow up" in a sense. It made them more gritty and realistic the way that The Untouchables and Dragnet did. Mike Torello on this show was just as tough and bad ass as Elliot Ness or Joe Friday! I loved the look of this series, it made you feel like you were back in that time where cars had finns, where rock and roll was king and where the good guys wore black! I loved the theme music for the show, it was Del Shannon's "Runaway" I always remember that song. Mike Torello against Ray Luca was almost like a morality play of good versus evil. The scripts were first class, and the actors never gave a performance that didn't rule. Dennis Farina had actually been a cop with Chicago Police Department and it amazes me that a man who never had an acting lesson could give such a fine performance in every show that he has been in! Crime Story wasn't a show for sissies, but it always delivered and kicked ass!
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Good show, an inspiration for others
MisterWhiplash6 May 2000
Who knew a cop show could be so good? I didn't (until I saw it). But this cast is so good, it makes the show very likeable. Dennis Farina plays a Torrello in a very cool way. Also, future NYPD Blue man David Caruso makes an impressive breakthrough here. Andrew Dice Clay here gives his ultimate best as a actor and is definately worth a look see. Good show, too bad it's gone now. A+
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10/10
The amazing tale of a ruthless gangster and the cop who'll stop at nothing to catch him
Sephiroth_FF2 August 2008
Whether you like action, drama or anything else in between, Crime Story is a one-of-a-kind show. If you've never seen it before and just read about it, you'll think "it's all been done before" but that's entirely untrue. Debuting in 1986, Crime Story centres on Lieutenant Mike Torello (Dennis Farina), a 1960's Chicago cop who is determined to catch the notorious and ruthless gangster Ray Luca (Anthony Denison). As Luca rises to power with each new kill, Torello is even more willing to do whatever it takes to take him down. And that includes going against protocol. Not only does Luca affect his working life but he also affects his personal life, with people he cares about getting in the cross-fire.

Often touted as a "precursor to "The Sopranos", Crime Story is a show that's seems too good to be true. Every episode is powerful and riveting and features some top-notch acting performances. Dennis Farina shines in the lead role as Mike Torello in his first-ever regular TV series. Being an ex-Chicago cop in real life, the role comes easy to him and makes it so believable that you'll sometimes forget it's just a TV show. You'll laugh with him, you'll cry with him, you'll feel his pain, you'll feel his joy. Dennis Farina has a very wide range and carries this show like he's not even trying. He's THAT good. Not only is Farina excellent but Anthony Denison (now known as Tony Denison who appears on TNT's The Closer) is just as good as Ray Luca. Crime Story was one of the first things Denison had appeared in but made it look like he had been acting all of his life. His performance as Ray Luca has to be one of the most gripping I've ever seen. He starts off as a street thug working for other people but gradually rises up in the ranks, taking people down around him. For the most part, Tony seems expressionless yet still manages to convey an evilness that is simply chilling. Torello and Luca cannot exist without each other. If you take one away, the show would lose something. Every time they come eye-to-eye, you'll feel the tension between them. As Luca becomes ever more powerful, he begins to think he is unstoppable and pushes the boundaries to the limit. No matter how frightening Luca seems, the only person who could send a shiver down his spine is Torello and although Luca would never admit it, you can see the fear in his eyes.

Not only are Farina and Denison's character two of the most powerful in television history but the supporting cast is also great too. Bill Smitrovich plays Danny Krychek, who works with Torello closer than anyone else on the team, Steve Ryan plays Nate Grossman, the smart-alec of the team, Bill Campbell is the young Joey Indelli and Paul Butler plays Walter Clemmons (who constantly has a smoke in his mouth). There is also Stephen Lang as David Abrams, an attorney who is at ends with Torello but eventually becomes one of his closest allies.

Support from the other side of the law include memorable performances from Jon Polito as Phil Bartoli (many of whom would recognize from a string of TV shows and movies), John Santucci as Ray Luca's clown-faced side-kick Pauli Taglia, Ted Levine as the slow-witted Frank Holman and Joseph Wiseman as the boss-of-bosses, Manny Weisbord. Also backing up the cast are guest stars such as David Caruso, Michael Madsen, Pam Grier, Julia Roberts, Gary Sinise (both in two of their earliest roles) and many more.

Music also plays a big part in the series. As we watch modern-day shows, lines and lines of dialogue are often drowned out by whiny and screaming music. This isn't the case with Crime Story. The show is filled with rock n' roll tunes that'll make you feel like you're really back in the 60's. But the most important thing about the music is that there's always a reason for it to be played (once again, unlike modern shows). Every episode of the show is introduced with a redone version of Del Shannon's "Runaway". Shannon was asked to rewrite the lyrics to reflect on the tragic circumstances that are often encountered by the characters featured in the show, hence the "some live and others die" line.

If all of this doesn't convince you to see the show then I don't know what would. It has so much to offer. Even after it's over, you'll still be thinking about it. It'll have a great impact on you and although it only went for two seasons, they were two incredibly powerful seasons. Even though the show was cancelled twenty odd years ago, you'll rack your brain over how it could've happened. The ratings may not have been too good but the show was highly praised at it's time and is now considered a cult classic. Once you see it, you'll want to watch it again and again and again.
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Incredible Cop Show
LuvsFood7 May 1999
I watched this one religiously, even taped a few episodes. Perfectly cast, this had gritty direction, excellent writing, and wonderful sets and visuals. Farina is perfect as ultra-tough guy Mike Torello, leading a squad of elite Major Crime Unit cops. The transplant from Chicago to Las Vegas works at first, but the abbreviated third season got a bit tacky. Great lines, awesome acting, and an overall "feel" that no police drama has come close to matching. Kudos to Michael Mann and his team of terrific writers.
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Best police TV show ever
CoenHead15 November 1998
If you are lucky enough to live in an area where Crime Story is still shown in syndication, by all means be sure to record every episode. Each one is a great story in and of itself, and Farina is terrific. "Crime Story" is the best tv series ever made about law enforcement. Set in the 1950's, it is authentic and captivating and you'll love it!
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welcome to the 80's
starfox-41 May 2006
Warning: Spoilers
This always had great cars, music and other technique's until the series on T.V came but overall it was in the time when they did Miami Vice which is now a game, but crime story is fantastic mainly if you like all the 80'S cop stories. As well there is a Chinese crime story with Jackie Chan in which is not the same.

The series really kicks into high gear when Luca makes a move to Vegas, heading up the Starlight Casino it's a licence to print money, naturally there are a hundred crooked scams a guy like Luca could pull here, but oddly he doesn't have designs on any of them. Aside from skimming from the slot machines to keep the bosses happy Luca wants to run a clean casino, much to the chagrin of the higher ups. As adept as he is at the criminal lifestyle Ray isn't happy being under the constantly scrutinising eye of the police, his plan is to completely legitimise their operations within ten years, seeing as they own so many profitable businesses as it is, there really isn't any point continuing to flirt with serious jail time. That isn't a view that everyone agrees with though, most of the bosses feel that they are untouchable, they may get all the money but they keep their hands otherwise clean, so some major power struggles ensue.

While Mann had creative control over the series as producer he only directed one episode, with the series using many different directors, including Abel Ferrara who directed the two hour pilot episode. His influence is clear, the pilot is somewhat darker than the rest of the series, and it's obvious he was pushing the limits of what was acceptable for television then along with striving to get the most from his budget. A series like this made today would obviously be more brutal, and the tight reign kept on Torello's language is in rather stark contrast to the rest of his character, but this isn't a series that pulls too many punches. A lot of characters aren't going to make it to the end, and even our heroes aren't the most law abiding men, Torello in particular is a man who'd clearly be a crook if he wasn't a cop – never feeling the need to flash his badge to get a little cooperation when flexing a muscle or two will get the job done. Not just when he's dealing with criminals either, the poor soul that refuses to deliver his dining table on time only just lives to regret things, along with waking up to a Molotov cocktail or two on his doorstep.

Crime Story is an impressive series, according to the sleeve notes the New York Times called it 'one of the best television series you've probably never seen' and they're right, I hadn't heard of the series before its release, which seems strange given how much influence it has had over both Mann's movies and many popular TV series today. They certainly weren't wrong about the quality either, as Crime Story manages to pack just as many gripping story elements into its series as the likes of NYPD Blue and Homicide: Life on the Street, along with being an intriguing examination of the thin line between the two sides of the law.
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Short-lived but not forgotten
S.R. Dipaling21 September 2007
I watched this show faithfully practically from the first show and throughout its run. When this show premiered in 1986,I was a freshman in high school and hadn't yet gotten access to my own car,so my social life was kinda limited. Knowing that,many of my Friday nights(when they,NBC,first plugged this show into their line-up)were "freed up" to watch television and I was usually between this show and the even shorter-lived ABC series "Starman". Ordinarily,I wouldn't ever suggest that one should eschew a social life in order to watch television,but I have to say that,where this show is concerned,I'm kinda glad I didn't have much of a social calendar.

Producer Michael Mann,flush with success in the mid-eighties from his white hot popular,MTV-fueled crime show "Miami Vice",created this show,a change of pace from the slick,'80s "Vice": cold,rough Chicago of 1963,where pre-Miranda warning cops battled tough,old school mobsters and rising,ambitious hoods. In this setting we watch as a war is brewing between two particulars:tough,no-nonsense Major Case squad Lt.Michael Torello(Dennis Farina,actual Chicago cop turned actor,excellent) and rising young-ish hood Ray Luca(Anthony Denison,so good here he's become somewhat prone to typecasting). As Luca's climb in the outfit continues to rise,the body count of people he uses(including some friends of Torello's)rises,and this fuels the drama further still.

Famously,the show's producers,by the end of 1986-87 had reasoned that the relatively low ratings had doomed the show to cancellation,this prompting the last episode to feature two of the main characters(I won't say which ones,since I'm certain that not EVERYONE knows about this show)were offed by a nuclear bomb detonation. So when the show's loyal fan base demanded the show to be brought back by a semi-reluctant NBC,the show,already changed of scenery to glitzy Las Vegas and the Chicago cops now Marshalls of the Department of Justice,had to undergo a fair amount of writer change and the storyline began to become stranger and more stilted,yet I still found the show very compelling. Many of the actors on the show have gone on to many other--and much more famous and successful--projects,but I still remember them from their stint on this show. This show was also a launching pad for then-unknown actors such as Lorraine Bracco,Gary Sinise,Stanley Tucci,David Caruso and Julia Roberts.I think it's a testimony to a show's potency when it can be off the air almost twenty years and STILL inspire plenty of interest on its IMDb site and on various TV and video websites.Heck,even the THEME SONG(Del Shannon re-doing his hit "Runaway")I thought set the mood and tone for the show,further adding to the enjoyment. Having seen all of the episodes at least twice,I feel like I may be inclined to buy the eps on DVD yet.

While it may seem a little dated,restrained and hokey by today's TV crime drama standards,I'd still recommend one--if one can run across this show--to give "Crime Story" a look.
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9/10
And as I still walk on I wonder
the_Poppuns16 February 2007
why this show only has 89 votes. It's one of my favorite shows of all time along with Twin Peaks, Arrested Development and Miami Vice. And anyone who loved Vice should love this. It's also by Michael Mann who as great as he is with movies is so much better with TV. This is actually where I fell in love with Andrew Dice Clay. That's right, you heard me. He played Max Goldman on the show and was great. Along with the wonderful Anthony John Denison, Dennis Farina and Stephen Lang. And in the pilot there is a super young David Caruso and the 4400's Billy Campbell plays one of the detectives. And let's not forget the super-cool don Manny Weisbord played by the legendary Joseph Weisman. And speaking of stars this was much like Miami Vice with a long list of guest stars. I remember Kevin Spacey playing a Kennedy type in one episode. They don't make shows like this anymore. It's a shame. We're fascinated when something like LOST is almost as good as TV used to be. If you like watching TV on DVD definitely give it a watch. It's better than everything on television right now.
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10/10
Dark, Menacing and Wonderfully Entertaining!
gooelf5028 January 2007
You just don't get this kind of show in television! How this series ever came about is a mystery. All of the stars and planets must have been in perfect alignment to result in the genesis of such a perfectly entertaining crime drama. I've never been a fan of police series, old or new. Dragnet, NYPD, Hawaii 50, CSI, Crossing Jordan, Closer, etc, etc, etc. They bore me. I guess it was pure luck that led me to "Crime Story" one day a few decades ago when I was off work with the flu. There was nothing else on and I was stuck with it. As I watched, the realization that I was seeing a unique drama hit me like a bag of anvils. The taste and feel of the show was unlike any other police series I'd ever seen. Dennis Farina looked absolutely menacing with his dark, foreboding eyes and physically intimidating approach to crimebusting, especially when interrogating the baddies. He headed up a group of hand selected detectives who handled the tough going with one hand in their pockets. They were fearless and didn't feel it was necessary to play fairly with the underworld characters they pursued with pitbull determination. The series was set in the 50s and 60s with dress and cars that gave viewers a nostaligic look the dangerous side of the "Happy Days" era. Each episode opened with background music by Del Shannon (Runaway), a musical icon of the period. When I first started watching the series, I was unaware that Dennis Farina, the star of the series and a virtual unknown, was a former Chicago Police Detective. That certainly explains the realistic feel of the series. I've looked everywhere for reruns, but have never been able to find a channel that carries the series in syndication. I also have no idea why the series ended. Did Dennis Farina decide that Television was not where he wanted to be? He eventually began making feature films ( I recall his terrific performances in "Get Shorty" and in a movie that he made with Bette Middler.) and decide to walk away from the series. I can't believe that the series wasn't popular enough to avoid cancellation because of low ratings, so what happened?
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10/10
in one word: Epic
burnett3316014 July 2006
Crime story is often considered a predecessor to more well-known but lower quality shows like the Sopranos which is essentially a soap opera with a minstrel show with Italian- Americans caricatures. Crime Story is a top 5 candidate for best crime drama of in TV history. It is the story of two men, one a smart, ambitious hoodlum determined to rise from small- time thievery to international kingpin, even if he has to kill his own mother to get there. The other is an old-fashioned, volatile policeman whose sole mission in life is to destroy the organized crime syndicate. There are both men on a quest that feels destined from day one to collide with the others quest. It is always clear to the audience that the reason for torellos hatred of luca and other criminals is his fundamental respect for human life and his adversary's lack of it. Mike Torello is the kind of cop who believes people are responsible for there actions and should be held accountable. This is the reason the show was set in the early 60s to begin with and the reason why torello is rapidly becoming a dinosaur. The Vietnam war begins late in the second season and you can feel torellos obsolesence coming on. Soon Americans will enter an era where public opinion leans toward blaming society for the criminals crimes and not the criminal. I Feel that if the series had gone on for 5-7 years instead of 2, we would have seen the locales and general feel of the show vary from season to season, with much character development. In the end assuming the shows final season was set around 1970 i think torello would have been considered a raving fascist lunatic in an asylum somewhere and ray luca would be running for office. I think crime story was as much about an important decade in American history as it was about these two men.
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10/10
Crime Story was the best!
Bill Crouch25 June 2006
I agree with this assessment of Crime Story as I also taped every episode that I could when they were on. My greatest Fathers Day gift from my son was the complete 2 seasons on DVD. Now I have a digital version of this "Best of the best" police shows. We need more great programs along these lines.

What was really interesting is that IMDb has complete bios on all the actors involved in the production and I found that the pilot had many current stars cast. As the show progressed, other actors early in their careers showed up from time to time. One in particular is the "deranged gunman" in season one that is currently Captain Brass in Crime Scene Investigation (CSI).
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What made the 80s great
cubman5913 March 2006
This show,and it's 1940s companion(also on NBC)"Private Eye",certainly made 1980s TV watching quite fun.I really enjoyed the exploits of Mike Torello and his group of crime fighters,and the scenery of Chicago and Las Vegas each and every week!!If you love shows like "The Untouchables",and "The Rookies",then you should give this one a try,you won't be sorry.Now that this series is available on DVD,it will finally be seen for the work of art that it is.I enjoy any series that re-creates a decade well,and "Crime Story"is no exception,the look and the feel of the show is pure 1960s,and the acting is excellent,in fact,so good that you find yourself rooting for the good guys without realizing it.All in all,a tour-de-force of the small screen!
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The most powerful cast ever assembled for a TV show!
SquirePM23 June 2002
I admit it's redundant to add my review to all these others. They

are all correct in their various forms of praise for this show. But I

can't help myself. This was just SUCH A GREAT SERIES that I

have to add my kudos. The cast list is jampacked with stars and

stars-to-be. Just click on each of them and see all the terrific

entertainment they've given us. Together in this show, with

wonderful writing and directing, they eclipsed every crime drama

that has ever appeared on our TV sets, including The Untouchables and

Miami Vice. All the cops here were wonderful, but I can't help

singling out the cast of bad guys. They really drove the show to its

greatest heights. Among so many of them, I must mention the

awesome performances of Anthony John Denison, Andrew

Dice Clay, Ted Levine and Jay O. Sanders. Each embodied the

darkest evil, and each in his own unique way. Oh, I *SO* wanted

them brought to justice!
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Whole series is great retro tv
DrCarol28 January 2001
If you loved the pilot or saw the show in the 80s and would love to see it again, you can now buy the entire series on video (but not DVD) from Columbia House. I've only seen five episodes so far, but I like what I've seen--the blend of suspense, humor, and grace that characterize Michael Mann's productions and an element of surprise in every episode. The Sixties music and the classic cars (especially Frank Holman's Studebaker Hawk) add a nostalgic touch, and the acting is exceptional. As in "Heat," the bad guys, even the cold-blooded Ray Luca (John Anthony Denison), are multi-dimensional human beings. John Santucci as Pauli Taglia provides some comic moments, and the amazing, under-appreciated Ted Levine demonstrates his usual versatility as the "wacked out home invader" Frank Holman. And Dennis Farina simply IS Torello, the sometimes violent cop whose love for his pretty wife borders on obsession. The episodes are linked to one another with no resolution of the intensifying conflict between Torello and Luca. Each one is like a chapter in a novel; you have to keep watching to see what happens next. And I intend to keep watching.
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Best cop show ever-sadly underrated
Dr. Nick*#320 November 1999
This show had atmosphere, dialogue, and a general toughness and realism that made it endlessly watchable. One of the best acting ensembles ever assembled, gripping storylines, the series moved so fast there was never a dull moment. Dennis Farina was perfectly cast and did amazing work, as did every other cast member and guest star. Shame I didn't tape the series when the USA channel ran it a few years ago.
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A great T.V. series!!
pigs12 April 1999
This is one of my favorite T.V. series of all times. The characters on the show were so good. My favorite actors on the show who were all so tremendous was Dennis Farina, Anthony Denison, Terry Nemeroff, and Ted Levine. If they brought that show back, I'd watch it religiously!
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I remember it well!
cruiser16 March 1999
Just saw an old episode of Barney Miller and there was Ray Sharkey. Thought to myself he was on both Wiseguy and Crime Story. I have every episode taped on Beta format and alas no more Beta recorder! I loved this show with my life! It was terrific and I still think Dennis Farina is one of the most underated actors around. If it ever comes into my area I will be sure to tape it in VHS for posterity.
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gritty crime drama
blamar19 November 2001
This is a wonderful, entertaining crime drama. It moved its location from Chicago to Las Vegas. It is neat to see Vegas as it once was. Turello and his squad of hard working honest cops try to stop the mob. The man they are trying to stop is a hood on the rise, Ray Luca.

This is a terrific show, with a dark style. It doesn't always wrap up in an hour, nor is the ending a happy one. Turello has sacrificed a lot to be a cop.
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