Perry's a Soul Man
Truman York (David Soul) was once as notorious for his drink and drug problems as he was for his artwork. So when he ends up thrown into a river during a police chase he decides to fake his own death and head down south to start a clean life in anonymity. But after many years in hiding, presumed dead, Truman returns to the city have become aware that someone was faking his artwork and making a fortune off of them. His return does not last long as after seeing his wife, who also thought he was dead, whilst the angry husband of a woman who died in the crash with him tries but fails to kill him, someone succeeds in murdering him as he slept. That angry husband finds himself charged with the murder but having a friend in Ken Malansky (William R. Moses) leads to Perry Mason (Raymond Burr) fighting his corner, with the usual help of Della Street (Barbara Hale).
Having watched a fair few Perry Mason movies I have to say that whilst all have been entertaining some have worked for the set-up and others have worked because of Perry's courtroom antics when solving the crime and catching the real criminal. In the case of "Perry Mason: The Case of the Fatal Framing" it is the set-up which for me makes the movie as the whole painter who faked his death returning from the dead only to be killed within 24 hours of doing so is entertaining. Plus it allowed for David Soul to appear in a supporting role which allowed him not only to be the laid back wild guy riding a motor bike as if he was in "Easy Rider" and then the angry painter who slashes fake artwork in a gallery.
Unfortunately when it comes to the actual solving of the case with Perry Mason working out who ever was creating the fake artwork was behind the murder is not that special. Okay we do have the interesting element that Perry Mason interrogates a computer/video system which was built using hours of interviews with the dead Truman, but it is for me a gimmick which doesn't really work when you think back to technology in 1992. Even so you still get the entertaining performances from regulars Raymond Burr, Barbara Hale and William R. Moses plus James McEachin delivers his usual entertaining performance as Lt. Ed Brock.
What this all boils down to is that whilst "Perry Mason: The Case of the Fatal Framing" is unsurprisingly entertaining it is more a case that the set-up to this case is entertaining and the rest of the movie is just okay.
Tags: Perry Mason