Starring Robert Mitchum, Charlotte Rampling, Sylvester Stallone, John Ireland, Sylvia Miles, Harry Dean Stanton, Jack O’Halloran

Unlike other Raymond Chandler adaptations, this one sticks closely to the book. While Phillip Marlowe (Mitchum) wisecracks his way through two concurrent cases involving blackmail, murder, and an ex-con’s wife, film noir fans can appreciate the film’s beautiful period detail, hardboiled soundtrack, and witty lines. As the second film based on Chandler’s novel, I give the slight edge to Murder, My Sweet (1944) which isn’t as faithful to the source but offers stronger characterizations.

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