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The Best Marlowe

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The Best Phillip Marlowe on Screen

Dick Powell
11
39%
Bogie
15
54%
Either Montgomery,or someone else
2
7%
 
Total votes: 28

Steven Bingen
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby Steven Bingen » August 18th, 2012, 3:03 pm

Thanks for posting these! Makes me want to watch the whole movie again. Or maybe just these clips, again, right now. No, maybe the whole movie.

clore
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby clore » August 14th, 2013, 10:10 pm

I watched THE LONG GOODBYE yesterday for the first time since it was released. Truth be told, I didn't like it then. It has nothing to do with the supposedly convoluted story (it really isn't), it's not that they move Marlowe up to the present day or that Gould was cast as Marlowe.

It commits the worst sin a film such as this can do - it's dull and the director does not seem to be passionately involved with the material except to destroy it. I thought that Nina Van Pallandt and Sterling Hayden were awful - she has no charisma at all and he's slipping in and out of his Terror in a Texas Town accent in mid-sentence. The film for me only perks up when Mark Rydell is on the screen and that's not really saying much. If you've seen him in Crime in the Streets, then you know what I mean. I was more concerned for Marlowe's missing cat than for any of the human characters.

OK, Altman wanted to push the envelope, but it's the cinematic equivalent of junk mail. It will take a $5K bill stuffed in an envelope to get me to watch it again. (That's a reference to an action in the film).

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Mr. Arkadin
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby Mr. Arkadin » August 15th, 2013, 8:16 am

Obviously, we have differing perspectives. I don't think it's really fair to compare Altman's Marlowe to the book (or Hawk's film) as he is intentionally placed in a modern world of disillusionment in the post-Kennedy/60’s era. What is odd about Gould's character, is his belief in man's integrity in a world that left such things behind long ago. He holds a romantic view of life that is slowly shattered and reacts in kind. The Long Goodbye to me, is a farewell to ethics, trust, kindheartedness, and eventually love. The close of the film signifies this, where he is remorseless and skipping along to a song about a tinsel town (not the theme we have heard throughout the film) and joined the masses, no longer a sucker with a soul. Bogart's Marlowe is a cynic, a man who trusts no one. That's how he survives. Gould's Marlowe is idealistic, which is why the film becomes a tragedy. His Marlowe, believes in the honor and integrity of the human spirit only to find disappointment. You can see the links to several of Nicholas Ray's works including Rebel Without a Cause and In a Lonely Place.

RedRiver
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby RedRiver » August 15th, 2013, 12:03 pm

I don't dislike the film as much as Clore does. But it's not very exciting and tends to plod along. I kept wondering why I was watching. Not a terrible film, but...why?
Last edited by RedRiver on August 15th, 2013, 12:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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JackFavell
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby JackFavell » August 15th, 2013, 12:20 pm

Well, I hate to tell you, clore, I now want to watch this movie very badly thanks to your review and the follow up posts! :D

clore
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby clore » August 15th, 2013, 1:26 pm

Mr. Arkadin wrote:Obviously, we have differing perspectives. I don't think it's really fair to compare Altman's Marlowe to the book (or Hawk's film) as he is intentionally placed in a modern world of disillusionment in the post-Kennedy/60’s era.


OK, that's fair enough. But Altman (or anyone), could have done that without stepping on the Marlowe tradition. Why not just come up with a different name for the lead, establish his own brand as it were? Who ever heard of J.J. Gittes before Chinatown? Sure, it was likened to Chandler and Hammett, but it could either be seen as homage or a diversion.

For Jack Favell, I would never tell anyone to not see a film, so please, take a look at it. You may get more from it than I do. But aside from how the film treats Marlowe, even if they gave him another name and retained everything else, I'd still find it dull and a couple of the performers to be lacking.

Two years later, the same producer Elliott Kastner, would return to the Chandler well to make the period piece Farewell, My Lovely. He would also go on to make The Big Sleep, again with Robert Mitchum as Marlowe, but this time set in the present day and transplanted across the Atlantic. The actor denounced the film on The Tonight Show while supposedly doing promotion for it. Still, I haven't seen that one since it came out, so I'm going to try to sit through it again.

RedRiver
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby RedRiver » August 16th, 2013, 10:12 am

I'll add this to the discussion. LONG GOODBYE is not one of the better books either. It's kind of ponderous; a little depressing. If I recall, there are some philosophical supporting characters who fail to liven things up. I actually prefer PLAYBACK, which came later and follows up on this story.

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ChiO
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby ChiO » August 25th, 2013, 9:34 am

Perhaps not entirely the right place for this, but close enough.

Interesting book review (and musings) on the PI in literature and film noir is found here.
Everyday people...that's what's wrong with the world. -- Morgan Morgan
I love movies. But don't get me wrong. I hate Hollywood. -- Orson Welles
Movies can only go forward in spite of the motion picture industry. -- Orson Welles

clore
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby clore » August 26th, 2013, 1:19 pm

ChiO wrote:Interesting book review (and musings) on the PI in literature and film noir is found here.


It's interesting for the number of errors that it contains, such as calling Bogart a PI in IN A LONELY PLACE and saying that there's a PI in REAR WINDOW.

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ChiO
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby ChiO » August 26th, 2013, 6:05 pm

I was providing the benefit of doubt on the details -- in so doing I interpreted the use of "PI" as "a private individual who investigates the circumstances relating to a crime or a supposed crime, with or without authorization or licensure" and, therefore, a broader term than "a licensed private investigator".

So it goes.
Everyday people...that's what's wrong with the world. -- Morgan Morgan
I love movies. But don't get me wrong. I hate Hollywood. -- Orson Welles
Movies can only go forward in spite of the motion picture industry. -- Orson Welles

clore
Posts: 73
Joined: November 6th, 2011, 4:21 pm

Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby clore » August 26th, 2013, 7:49 pm

ChiO wrote:I was providing the benefit of doubt on the details -- in so doing I interpreted the use of "PI" as "a private individual who investigates the circumstances relating to a crime or a supposed crime, with or without authorization or licensure" and, therefore, a broader term than "a licensed private investigator".

So it goes.


I wasn't ascribing the errors to you, ChiO. I'm just one of those who gets anal when reading misinformation such as this which could easily be corrected (and I'm regularly pointing out the errors made by those authoring the TCM intros on the TCM boards). Reader comments below the review point out even more errors, some of which I just didn't mention for the sake of brevity.

However, being brief does not excuse any possible implication of mine that you were at fault. I should have been specific there.

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ChiO
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby ChiO » August 26th, 2013, 9:15 pm

And I wasn't suggesting that you were ascribing the errors to me.

I was just indicating that what you called "errors" were matters that, though they caused me to twitch when I read the article, I decided (or rationalized) that the author was using "PI" in a different way than most of us would. Otherwise it was a gross error, and I usually try to find a reasonable way of interpreting such things so that the error is not gross (I once witnessed someone being skewered for saying a character was "framed" when he arguably wasn't, and it wasn't pleasant). I can be forgiving on such details when an author is making an overall point that I find interesting (even if I disagree) and the errors are not are such a quality and quantity as to destroy that point.

Anyhoo -- I found the article of interest.
Everyday people...that's what's wrong with the world. -- Morgan Morgan
I love movies. But don't get me wrong. I hate Hollywood. -- Orson Welles
Movies can only go forward in spite of the motion picture industry. -- Orson Welles

clore
Posts: 73
Joined: November 6th, 2011, 4:21 pm

Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby clore » August 27th, 2013, 7:07 am

The book itself sounds interesting, I'm always down for something that looks at the genre. It's the review that I find problematic but now I simply have to discover if the "errors" made were on the part of the reviewer or the author.
Last edited by clore on August 27th, 2013, 12:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Rita Hayworth
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby Rita Hayworth » August 27th, 2013, 8:01 am

RedRiver wrote:I'll add this to the discussion. LONG GOODBYE is not one of the better books either. It's kind of ponderous; a little depressing. If I recall, there are some philosophical supporting characters who fail to liven things up. I actually prefer PLAYBACK, which came later and follows up on this story.


I agree with you here ... and it's took me a day or two to get me here ... I prefer PLAYBACK over LONG GOODBYE anytime! Sorry, that I haven't been sharing that much - been busy of lately.

RedRiver
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Re: The Best Marlowe

Postby RedRiver » August 27th, 2013, 2:43 pm

A friend of mine is considering reading Chandler for the first time. Boy, is he in for a treat! I almost envy the experience. I'll read a lot of crime fiction in the coming months. But I bet I won't see anything of this caliber.


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