The Big Sleep (1946)
Average Rating: 8.8/10
Reviews Counted: 51
Fresh: 49 | Rotten: 2
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 7.5/10
Critic Reviews: 10
Fresh: 9 | Rotten: 1
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 4.1/5
User Ratings: 32,404
The definitive Humphrey Bogart/Lauren Bacall vehicle, The Big Sleep casts Bogart as Raymond Chandler's cynical private eye Philip Marlowe. Summoned to the home of the fabulously wealthy General Sternwood (Charles Waldron), Marlowe is hired to deal with a blackmailer shaking down the General's sensuous, thumb-sucking daughter Carmen (Martha Vickers). This earns Marlowe the displeasure of Carmen's sloe-eyed, seemingly straight-laced older sister Vivian (Bacall), who is fiercely protective of her
Aug 31, 1946 Limited
Feb 15, 2000
Warner Bros. Pictures
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The Big Sleep is wakeful fare for folks who don't care what is going on, or why, so long as the talk is hard and the action harder.
The Big Sleep, though, is witty and sinister, and in an odd way is a realistic portrayal of big-city life with Arabian Nights overtones.
Brittle Chandler characters have been transferred to the screen with punch by Howard Hawks' production and direction, providing full load of rough, tense action most of the way.
This is arguably the high-water mark of Hollywood's love affair with the infinitely slippery possibilities of the English language.
The plot is a bundle of confusions, but who cares? Few films have made cigarettes seem so glamorous. Or had such seductive repartee.
The Big Sleep is as fresh and perverse as ever, and remains one of Hollywood's most entrancingly strange bedtime stories.
Hawks' film noir remains legendary, despite complicated and convoluted plot, due to its star power and chemistry between Bogart and Bacall.
The Big Sleep has the distinction of being without doubt one of the greatest crime films of the Forties, yet also one of the least structurally satisfying.
Oozing class from start to finish, Howard Hawks' 1946 noir isn't just a Hollywood classic.
No screen couple, before or since, had as much chemistry as Bogart and Bacall.
Try to see the original version, which explains the plot better and has better story telling.
If anyone ever tries to make the argument that plot is more important than anything else in cinema, this is a great movie to throw in their face.
The direction, cinematography, screenplay, brooding score and acting in this movie are all without fault. If you see one film noir movie in your life, make it this one.
Bogart as Marlowe is compelling in this classic thriller that is complex but triumph of atmospheric cool.
Tribes of monkeys doing monkey things, albeit things related to the perforation of the flesh: murder and blood and sweat and sex.
True classic Bogie and Bacall, even though plot is way out puzzling in many ways.
Audience Reviews for The Big Sleep
- Agnes Lowzier: Wish me luck, Copper. I got a raw deal.
- Philip Marlowe: Your kind always does.
- Philip Marlowe: You do sell books don't you?
- Agnes Lowzier: What do those look like? Grapefruit?
- General Sternwood: If I seem a bit sinister as a parent Mr. Marlowe, it's because my hold on life is too slight to include any Victorian hypocrisy. I need hardly add any man who has lived as I have and indulges or the first time in parenthood at my age deserves all he gets.
- Philip Marlowe: She tried to sit on my lap while I was standing up.
- Vivian Sternwood Rutledge: So, you're a private detective. I didn't know they existed, except in books, or else they were greasy little men snooping around hotel corridors. My, you're a mess, aren't you?
- General Sternwood: You may smoke, too. I can still enjoy the smell of it. Hum, nice state of affairs when a man has to indulge his vices by proxy. You're looking, sir, at a very dull survival of a very gaudy life, crippled, paralyzed in both legs, barely I eat and my sleep is so near waking it's hardly worth a name. I seem to exist largely on heat like a newborn spider.
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