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The original Edgar Allan Poe story is based on the real-life murder of Mary Cecilia Rogers, who was found floating in the Hudson River near Weehawken, NJ. Poe transplanted the events to Paris and placed the case in the hands of amateur detective C. Auguste Dupin. In a weird twist, Poe's ultimate conclusion as to the circumstances of the crime were proved correct when the murderers confessed well after "The Mystery of Marie Roget" was published. See more »
M. Henri Beauvais:
Dupin? You had something to do with those murders in the Rue Morgue didn't you?
Something to do? Monsieur, Dr. Dupin practicaly solved those murders single handed.
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Edgar Allan Poe's three tales of Paris crime-solver C. Auguste Dupin are considered the first detective stories. "The Mystery of Marie Roget" is the least known of the three, and by far the dullest, but it has the distinction of being the first "ripped from the headlines" whodunit. Based on the unsolved murder of a minor New York celebrity named Mary Rogers, "Marie Roget" was a thinly fictionalized essay on the facts of that case and the newspapers' theories about it. (How thinly fictionalized was it? Poe even added footnotes to remind readers that he was actually talking about Mary Rogers!) There are plenty of colorful theories about why Poe came up with such a vague, confusing solution to the mystery, but he probably just didn't want to be proved wrong if the real crime was ever solved.
Any "Marie Roget" movie true to the original material would attract mostly scholars, literary buffs and insomniacs, but fortunately this film throws in elements from other Poe stories to liven things up. It also has Dupin do something a bit more exciting than sit in an armchair and deliver a lecture. He's called "Paul Dupin" here, but as Marie Roget might say, "Just call me Mary."
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