Murder, My Sweet (1944)

Approved  |   |  Crime, Drama, Film-Noir  |  9 December 1944 (USA)
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Reviews: 102 user | 58 critic

After being hired to find an ex-con's former girlfriend, Philip Marlowe is drawn into a deeply complex web of mystery and deceit.



(screenplay), (novel)
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Complete credited cast:
Douglas Walton ...
Police Lieutenant Randall (as Don Douglas)
Ralf Harolde ...
Esther Howard ...


This adaptation of the Raymond Chandler novel 'Farewell, My Lovely', renamed for the American market to prevent filmgoers mistaking it for a musical (for which Powell was already famous) has private eye Philip Marlowe hired by Moose Malloy, a petty crook just out of prison after a seven year stretch, to look for his former girlfriend, Velma, who has not been seen for the last six years. The case is tougher than Marlowe expected as his initially promising enquiries lead to a complex web of deceit involving bribery, perjury and theft, and where no one's motivation is obvious, least of all Marlowe's. Written by Mark Thompson <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


An Original Philip Marlowe Mystery See more »


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Release Date:

9 December 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Farewell, My Lovely  »

Box Office


$400,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


In order to make Mike Mazurki more threatening, Edward Dmytryk had the sets built with slanted ceilings to force the perspective. As Mazurki walked closer to the camera, he seemed almost to grow. See more »


When Marriott was in Marlowe's office standing by the desk, there was no shadow on his coat. Yet in the next shot from behind Marlowe, the shadow of the letters on the window are very prominent on his coat. See more »


Philip Marlowe: Now this is beginning to make sense, in a screwy sort of a way. I get dragged in and get money shoved at me. I get pushed out and get money shoved at me. Everybody pushes me in, everybody pushes me out. Nobody wants me to DO anything. Okay, put a check in the mail. I cost a lot not to do anything. I get restless. Throw in a trip to Mexico.
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Version of Farewell, My Lovely (1975) See more »

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User Reviews

One of the most entertaining Detective thrillers ever made.
31 July 2003 | by (Perth, Australia) – See all my reviews

'Murder, My Sweet' is based on Raymond Chandler's classic detective novel 'Farewell, My Lovely'. The book was later filmed in the 1970s under its original title starring Robert Mitchum. The Mitchum version is actually more faithful, but for some reason nowhere near as entertaining. 'Murder, My Sweet' tones down some of the racial and sexual aspects of the original story (which are included in the 1970s remake), and I'm might be mistaken (it's been a while since I read it), but the Anne Shirley character appears to have been created as a potential love interest for Dick Powell. She seems to have been inspired by a similar character in 'Double Indemnity' (written by James M. Cain and filmed the same year with the help of Chandler). Dick Powell was originally a crooner and casting him as Philip Marlowe was a very strange choice at the time, but it certainly works. Personally I would have preferred to see Robert Mitchum playing Marlowe in this version, but by the 1970s he was too old for the part, and comparing the two versions Powell definitely wins. Claire Trevor is also excellent as one of the definitive noir femme fatales, and her scenes with Powell are compelling. The drug sequence is also very memorable. 'Murder, My Sweet' is one of the most entertaining detective thrillers ever made, and along with 'Double Indemnity' and 'Out Of The Past' one of the very best crime movies of the 1940s.

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