Columbo (1971–2003)
7.4/10
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Murder, Smoke and Shadows 

An egocentric wunderkind director murders a childhood friend who threatens to expose his negligent complicity in the death of his sister years earlier.

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Alex Bradey
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Ruth 'Ruthie' Jernigan
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Rose Walker
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Leonard Fisher
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Mr. Marosco
Jerome Guardino ...
Elizabeth Ruscio ...
Fran
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Phil Crossette
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Stan
Gayle Harbor ...
Lisa
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Sewell
Avner Garbi ...
Kardarsian
Meg James ...
Tour Guide
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Waitress
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Storyline

This time Columbo pits his wits against a movie director who murders an old friend on a set, because this friend is in possession of a damaging piece of film, on which the actress died and isn't helped by the movie director. Written by Maarten Hofman <jen@cistron.nl>

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27 February 1989 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Columbo spots a couple of ice-cream sodas left on the counter in Alex Brady's office, known as his "boys' club". One glass is almost full, the other about half-full. Not only can we see this, but Columbo comments on it at length, theorizing with uncanny accuracy how the full and the half-full glasses show what happened earlier, when the victim was visiting Brady's office. The moment Columbo leaves, Brady rushes to the soda glasses, to destroy the evidence. Inexplicably, he finds both glasses are now empty except for a milky residue. See more »

Quotes

Columbo: [referring to the water bed] You know, I've never tried one of these. My wife, that's Mrs. Columbo, she tried to get me interested.
Alex Bradey: [after Columbo lies on the bed] Well, how do you like it?
Columbo: Well, to tell you the truth, sir, it feels all swimmy. Makes me wonder what Mrs. Columbo had in mind.
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Connections

References Dracula (1931) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A fun Columbo
8 September 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A Steven Spielberg type director murders an old friend who has uncovered the director's murder of a young woman years earlier. Columbo investigates, and we are treated to him walking around a studio and spending time in this young man's opulent dressing room, complete with a soda fountain. Columbo, of course, helps himself to a sundae.

This is one of the better "comeback" Columbos of the '80s and early '90s, with a delightful performance by Fisher Stevens as the director, who, despite a childlike quality is a total jerk. Nan Martin and Molly Hagen also turn in good performances.

There's a rumor that Steven Spielberg ghost-directed this episode. Hard to know, but the director does seem to have been modeled on him - not the murder part, though.


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