Murderer's Row

 (693)
6.01 h 45 min196613+
An evil villain (Karl Malden) threatens to melt Washington, D.C., and only super swinger Matt Helm (Dean Martin) can stop him.
Directors
Henry Levin
Starring
Ann-MargretDean MartinKarl Malden
Genres
Action
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
English
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Supporting actors
Beverly AdamsJames GregoryAnn-Margret
Producers
Irving Allen
Studio
Columbia Pictures
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Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
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Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

693 global ratings

  1. 71% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 17% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 8% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

Artist/Writer "Vernon" from Dallas, TexasReviewed in the United States on July 9, 2019
4.0 out of 5 stars
Campy fun
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Be forewarned; I love Dean Martin. So this classic movie suited me. Back some 50 plus years ago me and my then new bride used to go to downtown Dallas and watch every stinking one of these pretty awful movies. But we didn't really take them seriously and you probably shouldn't either. Mindless, memorable fun. That's about it.
6 people found this helpful
C. BennettReviewed in the United States on May 19, 2021
1.0 out of 5 stars
For Dean Martin Fans Only
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Dean Martin was pushing 50 at this point, and nationally beloved as a velvet-voiced singer/variety show host/personality. He was fellow Rat Packer Frank Sinatra's decent twin, and there just wasn't any reason not to like the guy. Here he strolls through scene after scene making the same ol' drinking jokes and using a lame gun-that-shoots-6-seconds-after-pulling-the-trigger trick to take out one adversary after another. Gotta go now...
Benjamin J BurgraffReviewed in the United States on May 20, 2010
4.0 out of 5 stars
If You Love Dino, You'll Love These; If Not, Well...
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If you weren't around in the 1960s, you may not understand the appeal of Dean Martin, who, in his day, was the most popular entertainer in America; the guy who knocked the Beatles' song "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" out of the #1 spot on the charts (with "Everybody Loves Somebody"), star of the most watched variety show on TV, a surprisingly gifted actor, in the right film roles...for nearly a decade, no other performer could match his appeal, not Elvis, not Sinatra, no one...for a guy pushing 50, who never got past tenth grade, and was declared 'washed up' when he broke up with partner Jerry Lewis in 1956, Dino's string of successes were astonishing!

Columbia Pictures decided to capitalize on Martin's popularity, and the 'James Bond' spy craze, as well, with a series of films based on the "Matt Helm" espionage novels of Donald Hamilton. While Hamilton's books were gritty and realistic, however, the movies would be light-hearted spoofs, with Martin playing his screen and TV 'persona', an amiable boozer who saved the world while tossing off drinks and one-liners, and beautiful women swooned. In accepting the role, in addition to some very nice paydays, Dino had specific demands; the very short shooting schedule could not interfere with his nightclub work, TV show, or golf; and he would never have to go on location (the "Helm" films would highlight some of the finest second unit film work of the 60s, with glorious views of Monte Carlo, the Riviera, Acapulco, and Copenhagen...while Dino toiled away in the Burbank back lot!).

Needless to say, the "Matt Helm" films were never an Oscar threat, but as entertainment, they were far better than some of the schlock of the era, with some first-rate actors, hamming it up!

"The Silencers" (1966): First of the series, introducing Martin as Helm, James Gregory as MacDonald, his boss at I.C.E., and Beverly Adams as his 'Girl Friday', Lovey Kravezit (uh-huh). A convoluted, hare-brained plot to explode a missile over an underground nuclear test site (releasing the radiation and thus initiating WWIII), offers rotund, blue-eyed Victor Buono chewing up scenery as Oriental villain Tung-Tze, sexy Daliah Lavi as a double agent, Cyd Charisse (her singing dubbed by Vicki Carr) as a doomed entertainer, and, best of all, Stella Stevens as a beautiful, if VERY clutzy innocent, drawn into the action. Martin is obviously having fun, and Stevens shows why she was as 'in demand' as a comedienne as she was as a serious actress... (3 1/2 stars, out of 5)

"Murderer's Row" (1966): Lifting a plot element of "You Only Live Twice" (where 007 is 'killed'), Helm 'dies', so he can go incognito to Monte Carlo, and search for the creator of a dangerous laser beam weapon, capable of destroying Washington. He teams up with the inventor's daughter (jiggly Ann-Margret, at the peak of her 'sex kitten' phase), and the pair face off against uber-hammy villain Karl Malden, sporting a bogus accent from SOMEWHERE in Europe! Camilla Sparv is Malden's sexy henchwoman, and there's a rousing action finale aboard an out-of-control hovercraft... (4 stars, out of 5)

"The Ambushers" (1967): A silly premise, as Helm and the female pilot of an experimental USAF 'flying saucer' (Janice Rule), search for her missing Top Secret aircraft, after she stumbles out of a Mexican jungle with amnesia, but without her ride. The film works better than you might expect, as Rule is both attractive, and a very good actress. Senta Berger is the sexy villainess, and slimy Albert Salmi is about as kinky and distasteful a bad guy as you'd ever see in a "Helm" film... (3 1/2 stars, out of 5)

"The Wrecking Crew" (1969): A billion in gold is stolen, threatening to topple the economies of the free world, if Helm can't recover it! British character actor Nigel Green is a suave, if shallow villain, but it's the women who truly light up the screen; Elke Sommer, as a ruthless blonde assassin, Nancy Kwan as a calculating Chinese beauty, Tina ("Gilligan's Island") Louise as a doomed gypsy, and, in her next-to-last film, Sharon Tate as Helm's very annoying British(!) ally. John Larch replaces James Gregory as MacDonald, and there is a bittersweet quality to the film, watching the beautiful 26-year-old Tate, who would by murdered by Charles Manson and his followers, barely six months after the film's release. (3 1/2 stars, out of 5).

Although another "Matt Helm" film is announced at the conclusion of "The Wrecking Crew" ("The Ravagers"), it was never made. The spy craze had ended, and the "Matt Helm" movies were losing money. After four films in three years, Martin felt it was about time to move on, and Sharon Tate's murder so upset him, he 'pulled the plug' on the series.

While Martin's later life would be tragic, "The Matt Helm Lounge" serves as a reminder of a happier time when Dino truly was the 'King'!
30 people found this helpful
PulpmanReviewed in the United States on August 30, 2013
5.0 out of 5 stars
Dean Martin as the cool spy
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The time is the sixties and spies were everywhere on the big screen,tv,books even aftershaves were spy influence (anyone remember the ads or high karate).
This series of movies were made at the height of the craze. They were tailored with Dean Martin's persona up front and in command. The stories are really comedies with Dean and some of the most beautiful actresses back then. The stories may be trite but Dean's performance carries these films.
There were four movies made and this box set has them all. The transfers are good and the audio is not up to todays standard but is still good.
I grew up around these times and recommend these films to anyone from that era and to anyone who is into sixties spy films. The craze started by the Bond films was really huge even bigger than Star Wars' influence. Cars, lighters, luggage and fashion all came to be spy influenced.There were dozens of spy movies and shows back then.
This series captures those times. The other actors around Dean were some of the best character actors around such as Victor Bouno who did a myraid of roles on film and tv Karl Malden who would be in the long running series Streets of San Francisco. The actresses were all good and did many tv and film roles. Stella Stevens,Ann Margret and Senta Berger.
These films are family fun and entertaining!
6 people found this helpful
Tome RaiderReviewed in the United States on June 30, 2006
5.0 out of 5 stars
A Note About Packaging
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Finally the boneheads who produce DVD's have comprehended a very conspicuous marketing concept: If product is placed in smaller, more efficient packaging, the consumer can buy more product! More money to be made! This Matt Helm set is a perfect example: four discs in two "slim line" cases, together only slightly thicker than a single regular DVD case! It is great to get so much product in such a small amount of space. Now if they could just re-package the previous several hundred DVD's I've bought which are housed in cases perhaps eight times bigger than necessary. I have had to stop buying DVd's due to space limitations; if everything had come in this type of packaging I'd have plenty of room for hundreds more.

Look, if you like the 60's, the women, the styles, the music, the overall feel....you're going to love these beautiful movies. Lots of Dean Martin here at his most likeable and lots of amazingly beautiful women (from an era when beautiful women were natural entities and not products of surgery and science). My wife and I both liked the fashions and the cars as well. Many exotic locales and elaborate sets. (These are not low budget movies by any means.) There are substantial samplings of Dean's music and lots of playful jabs at Sinatra. Picture quality is excellent. The colors are super vibrant. The sound on the first disc sounded a little muted for a few minutes, but then the rest sounded great.

These movies are just totally fun. Pour yourself a cocktail and join Deano on one of his hammy adventures. I personally liked these better than the Flint movies and some of the others from the era. We watched these four consecutive nights in a row and I really wished there had been a fifth, sixth, and....many more. Happy stuff, great fun.
11 people found this helpful
LARRY BAINTERReviewed in the United States on September 8, 2013
4.0 out of 5 stars
ENJOYABLE SPY SPOOFS
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I only gave these movies a four star rating based solely upon the special effects. Irving R. Levine must not have had much financing for these flicks, because the EFX were 'b" at best. But, remember, they were spoofing the James Bond films, so I guess the special effects were also spoofing them.
That being said, I thought the movies were enjoyable, with veteran actors throughout. I know Martin never went to rehearsals on his t.v. show, and at times I wondered if he rehearsed for the movies, Never-the-less, his impeccable timing and superb sense of humor do carry the plot along very well.
I watched these movies in the theatre, and had to have them on dvd. The price is for all four at once so it is very reasonable,and after considering that, I didn't feel slighted. As always, I thought the service from Amazon was excellent.
3 people found this helpful
SteveReviewed in the United States on January 18, 2006
5.0 out of 5 stars
If you like Dean...
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There's really no way for me to not give this five stars. None of the movies would come close to qualifying for a five star rating on their own, but given the consumer who is investigating this collection, it gets five stars because it delivers all the way.

The movies are comically bad and everyone knows it, especially Dean who nods and winks and deadpans his way through the lot of 'em. Thankfully we are given his "promo" spots for the film, promo in name only because Dean rolls his eyes and sarcastically recommends these exercises in farce with as much enthusiasm and droll humor as he executes his lines throughout the quartet of films. In the same cheesy category (and sharing the same musical director in Nelson Riddle) as the Batman movie and series from roughly the same time period, these movies are campy fun from one horribly bad scene to the next. There are plenty of outrageously hilarious moments, at times unintentional such as the special effects of a nuclear missle launch or other attempts at high-tech movie making, and others just plain pandering to the stereotype of Dean Martin - swinger, like the pop-up bar in a car as Dean and Stella Stevens get crushed tooling down the highway.

These movies are great fun and would go over well as a social event as well. It's just a shame that movies aren't made like this anymore. Certainly our culture needs lampooned with such endearing charm as Dean and co. did with these classics.
9 people found this helpful
Donna J LohmenReviewed in the United States on July 26, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
Great performance by Ann-Margret
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If you like private investigator movies.. with a comical twist... Dean Martin has Matt helm..in Murderers Row... With Ann-Margaret
Also appearing in the movie..
Karla Malden great performance as a bad guy...
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