The Big Sleep

[3.5 stars] [IMDB Link]

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Mitchum as Marlowe? Sure, why not? (Even though he was much older than book-Marlowe here.)

Moving the venue from 1930s L. A. to modern-day (well, 1970s) England? Raymond Chandler might object! But I guess those mean streets he wrote about are everywhere.

I recently re-read the book, I saw the Bogie/Bacall movie version from 1946 long ago. And I saw this one when it came out, but decided to rewatch it the other night.

Other than setting it in England, it seems relatively faithful to the book. Ailing General Sternwood (Jimmy Stewart) asks Marlowe's help in tracking down a blackmailer. Which sends Marlowe into a complex world of porn, sexual deviance, substance abuse, mobsters (Oliver Reed gives a chilling performance, Richard Boone a bizarre one). And (of course) murder.

Aaand… this is your go-to movie if you want to see Candy Clark (you might remember her from American Graffiti) nekkid. And she gives a very convincing portrayal of a substance-abusing lunatic here.

The IMDB trivia page is full of Fun Facts, including:

According to Michael Winner, Robert Mitchum and Richard Boone were very drunk when they filmed the final shootout. Winner quipped that it should have been called "Gunfight at Alcoholics Anonymous."

Last Modified 2024-01-11 3:58 PM EDT