The Film Detective Streams

The Film Detective, a veteran distributor of classic films and TV shows via home video and cable TV channels, has launched a subscription streaming service for Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV, with iOS access promised for 2017.

While The Film Detective claims a library of “thousands of hours of classic film and television restored from original elements,” its streaming service has launched with just 51 titles. These include Sounder (1972), Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964) The New Howdy Doody Show: Doodyville Documentary (1976), and the Oscar-winning documentary The Man Who Skied Down Everest (1975).

In addition to the classic fare, the service offers original content featuring Dana Hersey, longtime host of The Movie Loft on Boston’s WSBK-TV. The Film Detective’s first original production is The Outlaw: The Movie That Couldn’t Be Stopped, a “mini-documentary” about the 1943 film’s “controversial journey to success.”

The Outlaw itself, along with two other films – Kansas City Confidential (1952) and Patterns (1956) – are available free on the service’s website,

The Film Detective said that each month the streaming service’s content will be refreshed “for timely programming around themes, holidays and anniversaries,” and that three new films will be available for free streaming.

You can subscribe to The Film Detective for $3.99 monthly or $34.99 annually. To see a full list of all content currently available, go to

Here’s a promo for The Film Detective’s new streaming service:

While The Film Detective is promising a lot of rare content in the month’s ahead — including a “recently discovered,” HD-restored, Ed Wood TV pilot Final Curtain (1957) and restored versions of Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe (1940) and  The Vampire Bat (1933) — much of the streaming service’s material can also be seen, in admittedly poorer versions, in public domain prints. And so, courtesy of The Internet Archive, here’s Jane Russell as “sultry country vixen” Rio McDonald in The Outlaw. Feel free to compare it with The Film Detective’s version.

About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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