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Crime / Drama / Mystery

Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN


Top cast

Marilu Henner Photo
Marilu Henner as Kit Conger / Sue Alabama
Peter Boyle Photo
Peter Boyle as Jimmy Ryan
David Patrick Kelly Photo
David Patrick Kelly as The Punk
Sylvia Sidney Photo
Sylvia Sidney as Donaldina Cameron
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
895.43 MB
English 2.0
29.97 fps
1 hr 37 min
P/S 10 / 36
1.62 GB
English 2.0
29.97 fps
1 hr 37 min
P/S 9 / 79

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Uriah436 / 10

Benefits from the 1920's Backdrop

When a young Chinese woman by the name of "Cristal Ling" (Lydia Lei) goes missing in San Francisco a retired detective turned novelist named "Samuel Dashiell Hammett" (Frederic Forrest) agrees to attempt to find her. However, he soon begins to realize that there is much more to this missing person's case than his private detective friend "Jimmy Ryan" (Peter Boyle) initially told him. And the fact that even the police advise him to steer clear is even more cause for caution and concern. Now rather than reveal any more I will just say that this was an interesting mystery film which benefited greatly from the 1920's backdrop. Likewise, the twists and turns along the way which continued on to the very finish certainly helped to a great degree as well. Admittedly, it could have used a bit more action and suspense but even so I enjoyed this film overall and I have rated it accordingly. Slightly above average.

Reviewed by Bunuel19767 / 10

HAMMETT (Wim Wenders, 1982) ***

A surprising - and quite successful - belated attempt at film noir which gave Fredric Forrest the role of his life (Jason Robards Jr. had previously portrayed famed mystery writer Dashiell Hammett in JULIA [1977], and won an Oscar for it!) but also features terrific support from, among others, Peter Boyle, Marilu Henner, Richard Bradford and Elisha Cook Jnr. (playing an "anarchist with syndicalist tendencies"),not to mention cameos from the likes of Sylvia Sydney, Samuel Fuller and Royal Dano! Impeccable lighting and production design, together with John Barry's evocative score, set the seal on its perfect recreation of the genre's typical ambiance.

While the mystery plot wasn't immediately gripping and seemed unnecessarily convoluted (by way of an added fancy in which Hammett imagines characters from the film 'playing' the ones he invents for his stories!),it worked its way smoothly towards a satisfying conclusion. The fictionalized script took care to reference scenes from some of Hammett's most famous work - notably Roy Kinnear's Sydney Greenstreet impersonation and Forrest's own hand shaking (like Bogart's did) after standing up to the heavies, both from THE MALTESE FALCON (1941). However, the film's pornography subplot is actually derived from Raymond Chandler's "The Big Sleep"!

Even if HAMMETT doesn't seem to have suffered for it, the production was beset by behind-the-scenes problems which is a fascinating story in itself: executive producer Francis Ford Coppola had originally offered the film to Nicolas Roeg who, for some reason, didn't do it and eventually made BAD TIMING (1980; which, incidentally, I watched only a few days later!). Wenders, a lifelong devotee of American genre cinema, stepped behind the camera but his work apparently didn't meet the approval of his backers! "Halliwell's Film Guide" explained the situation thus: "The film was actually in pre-production from 1975, though shooting did not begin until 1980. This version was abandoned in rough cut and two-thirds of it was shot again in 1981 with a different crew. Sylvia Miles and Brian Keith were in the first version and not the second." For this reason alone, it's truly a shame that Paramount's DVD was a bare-bones affair (if very reasonably priced!) as a documentary on the making of the film or, better still, individual Audio Commentaries by Wenders and Coppola would have been greatly appreciated...

Reviewed by jbacks3-18 / 10

Interesting, but read the book!

HAMMETT was one of the first books I read for pleasure back in college and I recall anxiously awaiting how it was going to be Zeotroped on screen... visually the movie reminded me of a large single set production (like 1937's DEAD END)... it's almost as if somebody like Bill Gates took a film class and decided to adapt the book as his final. Large plot chunks are missing from the book (notably a car chase and a baseball bat murder) but this movie was so unique (in those pre-Joel and Ethan Cohen days) that I remember it looking like a strange painting even after 20+ years. Forrest is a terrific under-rated actor and was a perfect choice for Dash. You won't be wasting your time checking HAMMETT out but the book has it beat. 8/10.

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