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Dr. Rich Edwards

Daily Dose of Darkness #12: Calling on Four Million Dollars (Opening Scene of The Big Sleep)

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We learn about a PI who is ambitious and respectful but at the same time "non-subordinate", classy but not a stranger to female beauty even if served superficially. Irony witty but a notch more polished than Spade, less cynical. The presentation and tone of Marlowe is to the point of a noir PI in the way Chandler describes that character.

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- How does this opening sequence establish Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe? What do we learn about Marlowe in these first few moments of the film? 


We learn a lot about his background, his wit, even his height, the joke about trying to be tall seems as much about Bogart as Marlowe but the film actually gets a lot of info that is often in the cliched noir PI voice over naturally without needing to recourse to narration.


 


-- Do you see a difference in Bogart's portrayal of Marlowe compared to his performance as Spade inThe Maltese Falcon?


Some, he is more detached, wittier, feels he can hold his own in the rich company.  I dont know how much is really in the performance or the characters and how much is that by 1946 Bogart was a much bigger star and the writing is more tailored to his star image and Bogart was more comfortable in the personna.


Also it's Hawks not Huston, girls are witty and sexy but to be dealt with putdowns before moving on to the mans talk. There is nothing a dapper man of the world can't accomplish and no company that will prove too rich for him (strangely Huston the man was much like that but its not as big a deal in his films) Bogart's Marlowe is definitely a very Hawksian lead.


-- In what ways can the opening of The Big Sleep be considered an important contribution to the film noir style?


At the risk of confusing hard boiled detective style and the wider noir movement even more the intro probably sums up what a lot of people would consider noir. I tend to come to the Big Sleep as a massive Hawks fan rather than from a noir angle, In a Lonely Place is my Noir bogart but there are definitely a lot of the components of what makes up Noir in the public imagination here. The PI, the (literal) corrupting hothouse atmosphere with the daughter running wild, old money with something to hide and above the law.


 


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Sorry - please ignore the identical post by betteD - my sister and I are enjoying this course together and I didn't realize I was posting via her login. I hope she can delete it!

 

Bogart introduces Marlowe - the PI - as a personable (genuine smiles and politeness), direct ("My name is..., I'm here to see..."), and honest (" I was fired for insubordination") individual. He conveys a self-assuredness without being arrogant, unlike Spade who conveys a jaded-ness with his sarcastic and protective airs. But like his Spade character, he notices a beautiful woman and seems wary, cautious and flippant to them ("I try to be [tall].")

While this has characteristics of film noir, the opening starts out like many non-noir stories and the audience doesn't yet know what's in store  and who it involves.

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Bogart comes in as matter of fact stating he is Marlowe, and you get his vibe very early on.  Bogart's Marlowe is a little more - devil may care, easy going - he gets the job done but in a more laid back manner.  His Spade is much more hard boiled style PI.

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The first difference I noted between Sam Spade and Philip Marlowe was that while Spade seemed to be mostly all-business, Marlowe had more of a playful air to him. In comparison to last week's module where it was noted that the films noir of the 40s called for a greater character depth in the detectives from the crime films of the 30s, Spade and Marlowe would seem to lend themselves to this comparison. Much like how The Maltese Falcon shows the blend of the straightforward crimes films of the previous decade, such as its previous version made in 1931, and the beginnings of the film noir style, Spade was mostly invested in the mystery and was the main impetus of the plot. Sure there were touches of a darker character, such as the affair with his partner's wife, but Spade had the aura of a tough guy detective who would normally go for the hard push than the soft touch.

 

Philip Marlowe, as other detectives in film noir, shows more shades to his character than what has come before. With Carmen, he's flirty and playful, and with the General, he's more respectful and deferential. He's the alpha male with Carmen, but in the General's presence, he waits until given permission for taking off his jacket. Once the general begins to provide more personal information about himself, easing the situation, Marlowe is comfortable enough to roll up his sleeves and reveal a bit of his own past. I couldn't see Spade sitting and sweating while the General beat around the point of their meeting. Marlowe is more patient, and even tactful, and probably makes him the better detective. Marlowe is what the situation needs him to be, whether it's the tough guy or the understanding compatriot. Having Bogart in both roles runs the risk of both characters seeming to be the same, but Bogart was the perfect actor to make each role different and each his own.

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I love that we hear Marlowe introduce himself before we see him.  Excellent entrance for a protagonist. As Marlowe, Bogart is cool-headed and witty.  His quick on his feet, too.  It's evident the lack of respect he has for Carmen, introducing himself with a fake name and totally immune to her charms.  We can tell he's not going to be seduced by her.  On the flip side, he displays respect for the general, following the general's requests that he take off his coat, drink brandy, and smoke a cigarette. 

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*SPOILER ALERT*

 

Yes I remember that scene, with Brody pacing around...seemed like Brody was the best suspect, but I remember reading (and then reading again recently that--who was it? Howard Hawks? called...Raymond Chandler, I think, (maybe it was William Faulkner? I've heard several different versions), and asked who killed the chauffeur and even he didn't know. But Brody makes the most sense, thanks for explaining that. :-)

 

Spoiler Alert:

 

Yes,  Joe Brody killed the chauffeur.    When Marlow is grilling Brody in his apartment Marlow tells Brody to look at him when he is talking to him since it is common for someone that is lying to not wish to look someone in the eye.   Well Brody starts his story and since at first he is telling the truth he is looking at Marlow,  but when Brody starts to lie he turns away from Marlow.   Marlow has to keep circling around in order to look Brody in the face.    This scene has always cracked me up because it was Hawks shy way of telling us that Brody was lying.    After Brody is done Marlow does mock his story with something like 'so, you're telling me you left a guy in Beverly and someone took him to the ocean and pushed his car off the pier and you know nothing about that'.     But since Marlow doesn't really care how the chauffeur died and only wants to get those pictures of Carmen,  he moves on.

 

now I have another question--I'm confused by your comment about the production code. I thought in the movie, Carmen killed Sean Regan, right? Because doesn't Marlowe say something to Vivian about they're going to say it was Eddie Mars (but we all know it was Carmen) and Carmen will have to be "sent away" somewhere where she can't hurt anyone else or herself.

 

Note that Carmen's actions in this first scene with Marlow are a key part of the plot, especially in the book.    Marlow brushes Carmen off and men that do that upset her.   Just ask Sean Regan.   Well you could IF Carmen didn't kill him for that very reason  (in the book).

 

But because of the production code,  the story ends with Eddie Mars having killed Regan,  putting the blame on Carmen and than blackmailing the father and Vivian.    Eddie's death is 'moral' as defined by the code because of this.

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The opening of The Big Sleep acts as an information dump for the viewer--both about the character of Philip Marlowe and the character of his employers.  

 

Marlowe is respectful as he enters the house, removing his hat and addressing the butler politely.  He looks around the foyer, his expression that of a man not used to such opulent surroundings, but then again, not too impressed by them, either.  

 

When Carmen enters, he is not adverse to getting an eyeful of her short shorts or playing with her, but he is not crude about it, nor does he take advantage of her literally falling into his arms; rather, he is chivalrous enough to catch her when she intentionally lets herself fall.  He has the measure of her character, too; we see that when he remarks on her behavior to the butler.

 

When he meets the general, he accepts a drink and a smoke--he is not a man without vices.  He tells his prospective employer his age, that he went to college--but can still speak English when he needs too (presumedly meaning he can be working class when the occasion requires)--and that he worked for the DA before insubordination resulting in his termination.

 

It's quite the character portrait for a mere four minutes of film.

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*SPOILER ALERT*

 

Yes I remember that scene, with Brody pacing around...seemed like Brody was the best suspect, but I remember reading (and then reading again recently that--who was it? Howard Hawks? called...Raymond Chandler, I think, (maybe it was William Faulkner? I've heard several different versions), and asked who killed the chauffeur and even he didn't know. But Brody makes the most sense, thanks for explaining that. :-)

 

 

now I have another question--I'm confused by your comment about the production code. I thought in the movie, Carmen killed Sean Regan, right? Because doesn't Marlowe say something to Vivian about they're going to say it was Eddie Mars (but we all know it was Carmen) and Carmen will have to be "sent away" somewhere where she can't hurt anyone else or herself.

 

Many Spoiler Alerts!

 

The Production Code requires killers are punished.   In the book Carmen killed Regan because Regan rejected her sexual advances.   The movie implies this and a lot of the plot is built around the assumption that Carmen did the deed.  e.g.  Mars blackmailing the Strernwood family (the father),  that starts the movie.   However it is all a ruse.  e.g.  In a scene where Carmen gets into Marlow's room and makes a pass at him,  Marlow questions Carmen about Mars.   Carmen doesn't know Mars and Marlow even says that for once she is telling the truth.

 

So at the end in the house Marlow tells Mars that Mars convinced Vivian that Carmen killed Regan and mocks Mars by saying 'convince me Eddie'.    Marlow isn't convinced because Mars didn't recognize Carmen the prior day when Marlow and Carmen were in the house looking for her pictures.    i.e.  Mars says to Marlow 'the girl can go' in a way that says he doesn't know who she is.   The implication being that Mars would know who Carmen was if Carmen really had killed Regan and Mars was 'helping' Carmen by covering her crime.

 

Since Mars killed Regan (or had him killed by one of his thugs),   this allows Marlow to shoot him and force him out the door to his death.  The Code censors were OK with that ending since Mars the killer meets justice.    IF Carmen was the killer she wouldn't just be 'sent away' to a rest home.      Instead Carmen is sent away to deal with her sexual and drug issues.  

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At first, two of Humphrey Bogart's best known roles, Sam Spade and Phillip Marlowe, seem fairly similar. A reluctant, wisecracking private detective is dragged into a larger conspiracy. However, they do have key differences. Raymond Chandler's description of the Noir hero as quoted in the second lecture fits Marlowe to a T, which makes sense because Chandler was Marlowe's creator. Marlowe and Spade street-smart, familiar with the criminal underworld, and in the book Marlowe speaks of being well dressed as though it's something to be ashamed of. He's cynical and flawed. However, Marlowe has a certain honor about him which the more unscrupulous Spade lacks. This is shown immediately when Carmen Sternwood deliberately falls over, and Marlowe catches her, seemingly on instinct.

 

Sam Spade, on the other hand, seems to be willing to do anything for money. He decides to avenge Miles Archer because letting one's partner die is bad for business. Even within the most common archetype, it is possible to see a lot of variation in the Noir Hero.

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At first, two of Humphrey Bogart's best known roles, Sam Spade and Phillip Marlowe, seem fairly similar. A reluctant, wisecracking private detective is dragged into a larger conspiracy. However, they do have key differences. Raymond Chandler's description of the Noir hero as quoted in the second lecture fits Marlowe to a T, which makes sense because Chandler was Marlowe's creator. Marlowe and Spade street-smart, familiar with the criminal underworld, and in the book Marlowe speaks of being well dressed as though it's something to be ashamed of. He's cynical and flawed. However, Marlowe has a certain honor about him which the more unscrupulous Spade lacks. This is shown immediately when Carmen Sternwood deliberately falls over, and Marlowe catches her, seemingly on instinct.

 

Sam Spade, on the other hand, seems to be willing to do anything for money. He decides to avenge Miles Archer because letting one's partner die is bad for business. Even within the most common archetype, it is possible to see a lot of variation in the Noir Hero.

Yes, I see the same differences between Marlowe and Spade.  Credit to Bogart who played both characters so well for us to see those differences.

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Shadowy figure at the Sternwood's front door. Disembodied finger ringing the doorbell. A voice announcing his identity and reason for his visit.

 

Humphrey Bogart's Philip Marlowe is given a graduated entrance in The Big Sleep, slowly moving into the viewer's consciousness through strategic visual and auditory cues. The detective's hat casting a shadow across the Sternwood nameplate on the door--perhaps in a homage to an opening frame in Fritz Lang's M where Beckert's shadow moves across his "Wanted" poster--establishes Marlowe as a mysterious figure. It is a coincidence that hat's shadow perfectly highlights the "Stern" in "Sternwood" as the man moves into frame? Definitely not -- it is all mise-en-scene artistry. The man about to enter the Sternwood mansion is indeed a stern character.

 

When the camera pans down, the viewer is introduced to a disembodied fist, from which a thumb extends to ring the doorbell. Next, we hear the visitor's gravelly voice explaining who he is and why he is there. Hawks then has Marlowe enter the foyer; we observe him as the low-angle camera captures him moving towards us/the private areas of the mansion. He stops in his tracks as Carmen descends the staircase. This is when we see the character in his first full-frontal shot.

 

While Marlowe is every inch (pun intended) the well-dressed detective described by Chandler, Bogart's deportment shows that he may be out of his depth playing the sophisticated P.I. "calling on four million dollars." The outfit is impeccable, but Marlowe shouldn't be leaving his jacket unbuttoned as he enters the mansion. His left hand remains hidden in his pocket; meanwhile, he hooks his right thumb--the one he rang the doorbell with--underneath his belt. He holds his hat across his groin (further proof that he is immune to her charms), which comes between him and Carmen when she falls into his arms. Noticeably, his thumb remains hooked under his belt during this entire interaction; Marlowe is onto her games and easily catches her with one arm. Overall, his body language and kinetics strip away part of the image he is attempting to project.

 

Once he enters the General's hothouse, he accepts the offer to strip off his jacket after which sweat can been seen soaking through his shirt. "Everything the well dressed detective ought to be" is no more.

 

 

 

 

 

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12. THE BIG SLEEP: First Indirect Discourse Score.

The music expresses Marlow's POV as he encounters the debutante but stops cold even when the client waxes poetic indicating that when Marlow is conducting business he's all business.

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As several others have pointed out, a wealth of information is provided to the viewer about Phillip Marlowe in the opening of The Big Sleep.  Overall, his introduction provides the viewer with the sense that he is a levelheaded man who is not easily fazed.  When he enters the house, his posture and movements suggest that he is not terribly familiar with his surroundings, but yet not intimidated by them.  He carefully takes everything in as he enters the house.  When he meets Carmen, the viewer can see him looking her up and down appreciatively, so we know that he finds her attractive.  He seems amused by her flirting, but he never takes it seriously.  He seems to be curious as to what she will do next, but, again, nothing she says or does throws him; he’s always ready with a quip.

 

Even when he meets Mr. Sternwood, he is never deferential, as someone might be when meeting a man of his stature.  He is respectful, but he speaks his mind.  When asked if he likes orchids, he answers, “not particularly,” with no concern about if his answer will displease Mr. Sternwood.  The fact that he was fired for insubordination is not surprising, given what the viewer has seen of him so far; he does not seem like he would suffer fools gladly.

 

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It is a coincidence that hat's shadow perfectly highlights the "Stern" in "Sternwood" as the man moves into frame? Definitely not -- it is all mise-en-scene artistry. The man about to enter the Sternwood mansion is indeed a stern character.

 

 

I wondered if the emphasis on the "Stern" in Sternwood might be to point out the fact that we are going to meet members of the family who are not stern at all.  Carmen is just about as far from stern as one could get, and Mr. Sternwood, well, if he had been a stern father, perhaps his children wouldn't have turned out so wild.

 

 

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I'm impressed with the way that Marlowe remains non plussed by the strange things that happen once he enters the Sternwood home. He rolls with things. When Carmen falls into his arms he remains on the job, so to speak. He's neither appalled or seduced by her behavior. He's then shown into a hot house, which seems like Sternwood's attempt to place Marlowe in an uncomfortable position--quite literally--so that Sternwood remains in charge and in control. But instead of being shaken and put off by the general's environment, Marlowe takes things in stride. His refusal to be thrown off guard silently indicates the strength of his character.

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I think Bogart is the well-dressed man of Chandler's writing. Well-dressed to play a part as he was calling on a wealthy individual. It's hard to gain the confidence of someone affluent without the demeanor, competence and vestments that lend an air of familiarity, sophistication and sociability to Sternwood's standing. But you get the feeling that this is not how he always dresses or behaves. It's a game and he knows it. From the moment Carmen eyes him and begins her equivocating, Marlowe is the very picture of calm, cool and collected. But under the harsh scrutiny of Sternwood, in his pressure cooker greenhouse, he renders his vestments and is the common man, down to earth, hard working, rolling his sleeves to get down to business.

 

I think he has a similar character portrayal in The Maltese Falcon. He's never shaken. Calm in all matters, even when guns are pointed at him. I think that's what makes his character likable. I think that is also why so many admire his characters. We would all like think that we would be so unruffled in these same dramatic and dangerous moments.

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The establishing shot shows the location (Sternwood Mansion) with a close-up shot of the plaque on the door - from Marlowe's point of view. The name Sternwood evokes a sense of seriousness. Next, the camera cuts to a detail shot of a man's hand - thumb, pressing the door bell, bringing the viewer into the action. "A Guide to Narratological Film Analysis" article, Marlowe's introduction of himself is nondiegetic - speech coming from a source not located in the current scene. When Marlowe appears, he looks sharp in a dark suit, white shirt and tie. He looks, "...neat, clean, shaved and sober," the nod to Chandler. Marlowe appears more polished than his counterpart Spade, who even in suit and tie looks a bit rough around the edges. Marlowe is composed, but you sense that he guards his keen awareness of his surroundings. He is cool and clever in his banter with who we suspect to be the femme fatale (by her somewhat risque clothing and bold flirting). Although, I suspect his is just a bit taken aback when she falls into his arms - embarrassed to be "exposed" in front of the butler. As the scene transitions to the hot-house where he meets the General (an old, weak man who can only enjoy life vicariously) Marlowe reveals only what he wishes for the General to know - impressing with his credentials and warning with his revelations about being fired. The hot-house environment foreshadows how the action in the film is beginning to heat up, The reference to the orchids - a comparison to the fragility of man (the General) and the corruption of his sweet daughters, perhaps.

 

Having not seen the film in its entirety, I cannot speak to its contribution to films noir, but the clip contains many noir elements.

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I re-watched this a second time last night and had a completely different read of who Philip Marlowe is. The first time I watched it I thought Marlowe was a bit different than Sam Spade; nicer, more respectful, truthful, but gracious. Upon the second viewing I've come to re-interpret Marlowe as possibly more weathered, but still the same hard man as Sam Spade.

 

I've watched several films noir since this class begun and my perspective on these characters is that when in doubt they are shady. If they seem nice it's usually for manipulation. It was Fritz Lang's 1945 film Scarlet Street that pushed me into this cynical point of view. Edward G. Robinson's Chris seems like such a sweet innocent old man who's getting swindled. Then he takes some action near the end that shows he's no better than Johnny who beat women.

 

As for Marlowe, I believe he's just been in the business too long. Instead of being a fairly nice guy he knows that pleasantries come with the job and he can get paid a lot faster if he plays nice. When he first enters he scopes this obviously much younger woman from head to toe then proceeds to tell the butler to "ween her."He slips into his devious self for an instant when he see her, then the presents of the butler snaps him back to business. When he's talking to Gen. Sternwood he pauses before speaking a little out of turn about the General's daughters. Again I read this not as him trying to be kind, but as catching himself before he potentially makes his job more difficult. Lastly I thought Marlowe seemed challenging when he reveals he was fired. As if he was saying "I was fired for insubordination, I don't care. Do you want my help or not?" I guess that's film noir. Pretty terrible people who are so interesting to watch. 

 

I'm excited to watch the film in its entirety and see if my opinions change again.

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*SPOILER ALERT DISCUSSION*

B)

 

Hmm, very interesting! You mentioned something about a scene with Carmen in Marlowe's room--I have a vague recollection of him walking into his room, and her sitting in a chair, and him being startled by finding her there--is that the right one, or am I thinking of some other movie? Gosh, I haven't seen that scene in ages (which makes me wonder when I saw it/what version that was??) As if the plot couldn't be confusing enough, there are a couple of different versions with scenes added or missing, lol. ;) But why did Eddie Mars kill Sean Regan? Something to do with Eddie Mars' wife, I assume?

 

Many Spoiler Alerts!

 

The Production Code requires killers are punished.   In the book Carmen killed Regan because Regan rejected her sexual advances.   The movie implies this and a lot of the plot is built around the assumption that Carmen did the deed.  e.g.  Mars blackmailing the Strernwood family (the father),  that starts the movie.   However it is all a ruse.  e.g.  In a scene where Carmen gets into Marlow's room and makes a pass at him,  Marlow questions Carmen about Mars.   Carmen doesn't know Mars and Marlow even says that for once she is telling the truth.

 

So at the end in the house Marlow tells Mars that Mars convinced Vivian that Carmen killed Regan and mocks Mars by saying 'convince me Eddie'.    Marlow isn't convinced because Mars didn't recognize Carmen the prior day when Marlow and Carmen were in the house looking for her pictures.    i.e.  Mars says to Marlow 'the girl can go' in a way that says he doesn't know who she is.   The implication being that Mars would know who Carmen was if Carmen really had killed Regan and Mars was 'helping' Carmen by covering her crime.

 

Since Mars killed Regan (or had him killed by one of his thugs),   this allows Marlow to shoot him and force him out the door to his death.  The Code censors were OK with that ending since Mars the killer meets justice.    IF Carmen was the killer she wouldn't just be 'sent away' to a rest home.      Instead Carmen is sent away to deal with her sexual and drug issues.  

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*SPOILER ALERT DISCUSSION*

B)

 

Hmm, very interesting! You mentioned something about a scene with Carmen in Marlowe's room--I have a vague recollection of him walking into his room, and her sitting in a chair, and him being startled by finding her there--is that the right one, or am I thinking of some other movie? Gosh, I haven't seen that scene in ages (which makes me wonder when I saw it/what version that was??) As if the plot couldn't be confusing enough, there are a couple of different versions with scenes added or missing, lol. ;) But why did Eddie Mars kill Sean Regan? Something to do with Eddie Mars' wife, I assume?

 

Spoiler Alert

 

You have the right scene.   Marlow didn't want Carmen there but since she was he asked her a few questioned related to Eddie Mars.   The scene is funny because Carmen goes to bite her thumb and stops herself and says to Marlow 'see, I remembered' as if to say she isn't just a child after all.   Carmen says Marlow is cute and a Marlow says something like 'you haven't seen anything, I have dancing girls tattoo on my chest'.    But since Marlow doesn't like childish women he throws her out.

 

I also assume Mars killed Regan because he believed he was messing around with his wife.  When Marlow meets Mrs. Mars she tell him that they were just friends.   To me the wife is really saying 'we were just friends,,,, but my husband didn't thinks so!'.    In the book  Marlow is the one messing around with Mrs. Mars,  but this was changed because what would a Bogie \ Bacall film be unless the two hooked up!

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This opening scene is one of the most efficiently written ever, providing immediate information on Humphrey Bogart's character as Philip Marlowe in an entertaining manner that seems perfectly natural and not at all like the expository speeches that they are. Brilliant!  Only an actor with the charisma of Bogart can carry that off.


And I for one find this Bogart's Marlowe far more immediately likable and friendly than his Spade.  He is easy going here as opposed to the high strung, gruffier (I think I just made up a word) Spade.  And yet he manages to stay within the parameters of a true Noir leading man. Or is that just Bogart in general?


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The opening of The Big Sleep establishes Bogart as Philip Marlow by the way he portrayes the charater, the character has a quick wit. We learn about the ha rafter by the way that he interacts with the youngest daughter, the butler and the father. I see a difference between the characters. The same Spade is a more understanding character.The Big Sleep can be considered an important contribution to the noir style because of the mysterious shady characters that are introduced in the opening scene.

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What are you doing here?

Yes, leaving the class might serve you well. We're happy here and are not impressed by naysayers.  Bye-bye.

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From the clip, Marlowe has the self-assurance and roguishness of Spade, but in a muted form. Bogart makes Marlowe more honest, direct and less greedy than the conception of Spade; you're rooting for him all the way. I like the interplay between Marlowe and General Sternwood, showing two men of the world who seem to understand one another. Marlowe is impressed with the general's candor about his life and relationship with his daughters; the old man digs Marlowe's viewpoint on the world. When Marlowe admits he was fired from his job with the district attorney's office for insubordination, Sternwood sympathizes because he'd been accused of the same in his career. Add to that Marlowe's understanding about the general and Sean Regan, and there's a link between two men who can be open with each other, as opposed to Spade and Gutman's cagey conversations in THE MALTESE FALCON. I think Spade would be that much more cynical in keeping with the Hammett original, but since Marlowe in the Chandler novels is more observant of the people he encounters (providing justification for his watching everyone with a subjective camera in LADY IN THE LAKE, 1946) he's a bit more emphatic than the Spade of Bogart's THE MALTESE FALCON. The opening of THE BIG SLEEP is important to the establishment of film noir for that hothouse scene alone; as I said earlier this week with the opening of THE KILLERS, THE BIG SLEEP is remarkably faithful to the first several pages of the novel, which impressed me greatly at an early age (11 after my mom bought me a copy of the second volume of A TREASURY OF GREAT MYSTERIES, which opened with THE BIG SLEEP, at a school rummage sale. On the ride home, Marlowe's arrival and interview with Sternwood came vividly to life for me. Hawks beautifully re-creates the scene and the atmosphere). An aside: I prefer the first version of THE BIG SLEEP seen by the military in 1945 over the revamp that appeared the following year with the Bogart-Bacall romance getting punched up. The first version sticks closer to the original story, even if Chandler was of no help figuring out some of the character motivations.

I can't just click "Like"and leave.  I want to say that I was moved by the clarity and humanity of your vision and your ability  to write it.  Thank you very much.

Edited by skootie116

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