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Columbo: An Exercise in Fatality (1974)
Season 4, Episode 1
Does Columbo's clue prove guilt or innocence?
27 March 2006
*****This contains Spoilers*****

Overall, I really enjoy watching this episode. Both Falk and Conrad play well off one another. But this comment concerns the shoe evidence that trips up (no pun intended) the murderer's alibi. Columbo explains in detail how someone else had tied the victim's shoe laces on his gym shoes. He explains how when right handed people tie their shoes the big loop of the lace ends up over the same toe every time. However, the victim's gym shoe laces show the big loop over the opposite toe; which conflicts with the way his work shoes were tied. Proving that someone killed the victim and then dressed him in his gym clothes and tied the gym shoes from the opposite direction; and by the killer's sworn statement he said the victim told him he had already changed his clothes. This leads Columbo to the conclusion that the killer couldn't have known the victim was in his gym clothes unless he was the one that changed the clothes. Now, as logic goes, that's not a bad supposition. However, in one of the earlier scenes the victim is seen writing with his left hand; which by Columbo's reasoning would conclude that the victim tied his own gym shoes. Seems like all the killer would've had to do was to tell Columbo that bit of news.
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Character flaw
21 October 2003
As much as I enjoyed watching this film and reading the reviews; I'd like to comment on one aspect of the film that I haven't seen touched upon. The character of Shelby is meant to be portrayed as an optimistic, strong willed individual, determined to buck the odds to have the baby she longs to have. However, I can't help but see the character as incredibly selfish. Even though she knows that going through a pregnancy will put undo strain on her weakened system and potentially threaten and shorten her life, she resolves to get pregnant anyway; just so she can have a baby. Apparently she hasn't given a thought to either the child or her husband for that matter. She intentionally puts her husband in the position of probably losing his wife and raising a child as a single parent and whatever child she has, of losing its mother. Not exactly the behavior of someone who has a child's best interest in mind. All the character illustrated was that her husband was just a means to an end.
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I really liked this movie
22 December 2002
I really liked this movie; when it was called "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn." Khan did it first and Kahn did it better. For what is supposed to be the last Trek film for this cast, you'd think an original story line would've been a priority or at least a consideration. If you have cable, wait for it to come to cable. Rick Berman, you should be ashamed of yourself; Roddenberry must be spinning in his grave.
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