Shamus (1973)

Shamus (1973)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Shamus Photos

Movie Info

This detective-themed action-adventure film spoofs The Big Sleep, which was based on the novel by Raymond Chandler. Burt Reynolds plays McCoy, a hard-nosed private detective. The story has more tangles than a bowl of spaghetti, but it begins when McCoy is called to the house of Hume (Ron Weyand), an eccentric diamond dealer, and is given the task of recovering some stolen gems. McCoy is beaten by a gang of thugs to warn him off the job, and this lets him know that he's onto something really big. By the end of the film, McCoy will have hooked up with a gorgeous blonde (Dyan Cannon), driven a tank through a warehouse wall, and delivered numerous crooks to the police.
Action & Adventure , Comedy , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Columbia Pictures


Dyan Cannon
as Alexis
John P. Ryan
as Col. Hardcore
John Glover
as Johnnie Bronston
Kevin Conway
as The Kid
Joe Santos
as Lt. Promuto
Larry Block
as Springy
Frank Sivero
as Bookie
Alex Wilson
as Felix Montaigne
Ron Weyand
as E.J. Hume
Alex Stevens
as Knifer
Alisha Fontaine
as Hatcheck Girl
Ric Mancini
as Angie
Tommy Lane
as Tait
Steve Vignari
as Hardnose
Melody Santangelo
as 1st Woman
Kathy Frye
as Bookstore Girl
Georgio Tozzi
as Il Dottore
Bert Bertram
as Doorman
Jimmy Kelly
as Grifter
Fat Thomas Rand
as Big Jake
Mark Weston
as Detective
Don Cost
as Booky
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Shamus

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (1)

This tiresome private eye crime drama is what The Big Sleep would look like if it was dreck.

Full Review… | February 11, 2006
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

A must-see for the 70s icons alone -- Burt Reynolds, Dyan Cannon, and Morris the Cat!

Full Review… | January 28, 2005

By the time the mysteries are solved, you won't only be confused; you simply won't care anymore.

Full Review… | October 20, 2002

Quote not available.

October 15, 2005

Quote not available.

Full Review… | October 23, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Quote not available.

November 7, 2003
Las Vegas Review-Journal

Audience Reviews for Shamus


Why has this film faded into semi obscurity? It's great. First of all, Burt Reynolds is one of the best action heroes ever. Forget your physical specimens of the 80s to present, Burty has the build of a normal dude, he gets tired, hung over, physically overtaken, but he's clever as hell. It's seeing him struggle through action sequences that makes them so exciting in this flick. Not to mention he's his smarmy self, and bit of a womanizer at that, but I mean, it was the 70s. Think of him as a bubbling Shaft, but less so than Elliott Gould's Marlowe in the Long Goodbye. Added to all this you have an intriguing story, and some strange, yet amusing characters and situations. Not to forget a great and appropriate score from Jerry Goldsmith. Almost needless to say: this one stands out.

Patrick Dolan
Patrick Dolan

Super Reviewer

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