The Cheap Detective (1978)

The Cheap Detective


No critic reviews yet...


Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Written by Neil Simon, this comedy spoofs a number of Humphrey Bogart films as Peter Falk plays a sleuth in San Francisco. Joining the cast of greats are Madeline Kahn, Eileen Brennan, Dom DeLuise, Marsha Mason, Ann-Margret, Stockard Channing, John Houseman, Sid Caesar et. al.

Rating: PG
Genre: Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Neil Simon
In Theaters:
On DVD: Nov 13, 2001


as Lou Peckinpaugh

as Jezebel Dezire

as Betty DeBoop

as Ezra Dezire

as Marcel

as Pepe Damascus

as Marlene DuChard

as Jasper Blubber

as Mrs. Montenegro

as Paul DuChard

as Georgia Merkle

as Sgt. Rizzuto

as Col. Schissel

as Butler

as Sgt. Crosseti

as Lt. DiMaggio

as Hat-Check Girl

as Qvicker

as Bandleader

as Courier

as Scrub Woman

as Desk Clerk

as Michel

as Cab Driver

as Cab Driver

as Michel

as Croupier #1

as Croupier #2

as Croupier #2

as Man in Crusades Bar

as Man in Crusades Bar

as Floyd Merkle

as Elegant Lady

as Elegant Lady

as Elegant Lady

as Lady of the Night

as Lady of the Night

as Military Wife

as Military Wife

as Military Wife

as Navy Wife

as Army Wife

as Military Man

as Military Man

as Detective

as Cigarette Girl

as German Singer
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News & Interviews for The Cheap Detective

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Critic Reviews for The Cheap Detective

All Critics (17) | Top Critics (4)

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Better received in 1978 than now when it seems too contrived.

December 19, 2005

Very funny send-up of the hard-boiled detective genre.

November 20, 2003
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

Audience Reviews for The Cheap Detective


The Maltese Falcon and Casablanca are where this spoof/send-up begins, turning out little better than a lame Saturday Night Live skit (only running longer), but enjoyable for the charisma of its cast, obviously enjoying a chance at these familiar characters. Falk made a career out of playing a poor man's Bogie, and there's not enough Ann-Margret.

Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

Peter Falk's typecasting as a noir detective was never more prominent than in the genre spoof The Cheap Detective. Borrowing heavily from the Humphrey Bogart classics of the past, the film also pays enormous homage to the genre itself while managing to be a great, smart comedy on its own. With a cast that includes Ann-Margaret, Eileen Brennan, Madeline Kahn, Sid Cesar, Dom DeLuise, Louise Fletcher, Paul Williams and Stockard Channing, the movie is so wonderfully colorful in its casting, depsite not being a particularly strong film. It is enjoyable and fun, but lacks the qualities of a perfected comedy classic.

Tim Salmons

Super Reviewer

Yet another detective spoof movie from the 70s?! Yep. Again, we have a fantastic all star cast, and a very funny story. I really liked this movie, even if it isn't very different from other movies like it.

Aj V

Super Reviewer

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