A newspaper man, his ignored fiancée, and his former employee, a down on his luck reporter, hatch an elaborate scheme to turn a false news story into the truth in order to prevent a high-society woman from suing for libel.
After a four year absence, one time detective Nick Charles returns to New York with his new wife Nora and their dog, Asta. Nick re-connects with many of his old cronies, several of whom are eccentric characters, to say the least. He's also approached by Dorothy Wynant whose inventor father Clyde Wynant is suspected of murdering her father's mistress (his former secretary ).. Her father had left on a planned trip some months before and she has had no contact with him. Nick isn't all that keen on resuming his former profession but egged-on by wife Nora, who thinks this all very exciting, he agrees to help out. He solves the case, announcing the identity of the killer at a dinner party for all of the suspects.Written by
Given three weeks to shoot the film, W.S. Van Dyke managed it all in 12 days for the paltry budget of $231,000 (April 9-mid May). The film surprised everyone by becoming a major box office hit, raking in $1.4 million. See more »
During Nick and Nora's Christmas Eve party, the handkerchief in Nick's jacket pocket keeps changing in appearance. See more »
Your daughter's here, Mr. Wynant. Mr. Wynant! Mr. Wynant!
Clyde Wynant, the thin man:
Haven't you got any more sense than to shout at me like that?
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Opening credits are shown with the original novel by D. Hammett in the background. See more »
Often said, but still a marvel to watch, even after 72 years. If you want some intelligent fun with that since long vanished Hollywood class, catch this one. This comic murder mystery introduced the world to one of the most perfect screen matches I know, the incomparable duo William Powell and Myrna Loy. Shot by Woody "one shot" van Dyke in just twelve days with many of the first takes used in the film, it still comes across as wonderfully fresh.
The story revolves around William Powell as detective Nick Charles, who tries to crack the case of a missing scientist, together with his wife Nora (Myrna Loy). But forget about this whodunit aspect of the film, it's not that important. It's just adding to the fun. It's all about the marvellous interaction between Powell and Loy, simply the most wonderful screen pairing ever. Their constant courtship is a marvel to look at and watching the wonderful chemistry burning of the screen leaves me in a pleasant happy daze, slightly intoxicating.
They must be one of the very few boozy characters in the history of cinema, that seem to be drunk all the time and be continuously happy at the same time. On a continuous drinking frenzy, they're either perpetually pixillated or fighting the hang-over. Never marry someone who doesn't join you when drinking. Nora certainly does.
When they meet up in a restaurant Nora asks: 'Say, how many drinks have you had?'. 'Uhmm, this will make six Martini's.' 'Alright, waiter, will you bring me five more Martini's. You can all line them up right here.'
Between the endless string of cocktail parties their lives seem to consist of, he still needs to crack a murder case, as a journalist remembers him. 'Do you know anything about the case?' 'Yes, it's putting me way behind in my drinking.'
A stellar supporting cast, a witty script with wonderful dialog, style and class to spare, and most importantly, the one of a kind chemistry between Powell and Loy all contribute to the enjoyment of this film. A real winner.
Camera Obscura --- 9/10
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