IMDb > Murder by Death (1976)
Murder by Death
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Murder by Death (1976) More at IMDbPro »

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Murder by Death -- Trailer for this classic Neil Simon film starring Peter Sellers

Overview

User Rating:
7.5/10   20,861 votes »
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Up 43% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writer:
Neil Simon (written by)
Contact:
View company contact information for Murder by Death on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
23 June 1976 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
By the time the world's greatest detectives figure out whodunnit... you could die laughing! See more »
Plot:
Five famous literary detective characters and their sidekicks are invited to a bizarre mansion to solve an even stranger mystery. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
What A Hoot See more (154 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Directed by
Robert Moore 
 
Writing credits
Neil Simon (written by)

Produced by
Roger M. Rothstein .... associate producer
Ray Stark .... producer
 
Original Music by
Dave Grusin 
 
Cinematography by
David M. Walsh (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
John F. Burnett (film editor)
 
Casting by
Jennifer Shull 
 
Production Design by
Stephen B. Grimes  (as Stephen Grimes)
 
Art Direction by
Harry Kemm 
 
Set Decoration by
Marvin March 
 
Costume Design by
Ann Roth (costumes designed by)
 
Makeup Department
Joe DiBella .... makeup (as Joseph Di Bella)
Charles H. Schram .... makeup supervisor (as Charles Schram)
Vivienne Walker .... hairstylist
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Fred T. Gallo .... assistant director
David Sosna .... second assistant director (as David O. Sosna)
 
Art Department
Terry E. Lewis .... property master
 
Sound Department
Jerry Jost .... sound mixer
Joseph Kite .... boom operator
Tex Rudloff .... re-recordist
Frank E. Warner .... sound effects editor (as Frank Warner)
 
Special Effects by
Augie Lohman .... special effects
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Robert Edesa .... assistant cameraman
Norman Harris .... gaffer
Richard Moran .... key grip
Roger Shearman .... camera operator (as Roger Shearman Jr.)
Mel Traxel .... still photographer
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Tony Faso .... costumer: men
Agnes G. Henry .... costumer: women
Joan Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Margaret Booth .... supervising film editor
John Brice .... apprentice film editor
Michael A. Stevenson .... assistant film editor
 
Music Department
George Probert .... music editor
 
Other crew
Charles Addams .... title drawings
Frank Bueno .... assistant to producer
Wayne Fitzgerald .... title designer
Shari Leibowitz .... assistant to production manager
Mary Malin .... assistant: to Ann Roth
Vince Martinez .... auditor
George Rondo .... dialogue coach
Carol Shapiro .... unit publicist
Julia Tucker .... script continuity
 
Crew verified as complete


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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
94 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Metrocolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.33 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
David Niven plays Dick Charleston, a role based on Nick Charles which was originated by William Powell in the Thin Man movies. This is the second time Niven has played a role originated by Powell, having also played the titular role in the remake of My Man Godfrey (1936).See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When Inspector Milo Perrier is being driven to the home of Lionel Twain, the candy bar he is eating changes size inconsistently between shots.See more »
Quotes:
[stumbling around during a blackout]
Dora Charleston:Dickie, don't. You know how I get when you touch me there.
Dick Charleston:Me, darling? I've got my hands in my pockets.
Sam Diamond:I'm afraid they're my pockets.
Dick Charleston:Oh, sorry about that.
Dora Charleston:Dickie, behave yourself.
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

Whom are the characters based upon?
See more »
23 out of 29 people found the following review useful.
What A Hoot, 19 August 2006
Author: Lechuguilla from Dallas, Texas

An all-star cast, superb dialogue, effective lighting and editing, great production design, and interesting costumes rev up the technical quality of this cinematic spoof of literary whodunits. An eccentric genius named Lionel Twain (Truman Capote) invites the world's five greatest fictional detectives to a dinner party, at which time someone will be murdered. The detective who solves the crime first gets $1 million.

Everything in this film, from the acting to the sound effects to the plot ... is deliciously exaggerated ... hence the humor. For example, mystery readers accept that Hercule Poirot and Charlie Chan are so observant as to spot the most obscure clue, which conveniently points to the solution of the puzzle. In "Murder By Death" writer Neil Simon exaggerates that gambit. A guest detective draws the most outlandish conclusion from the most irrelevant fact, which in turn is shot down by another guest detective who points out the flaws, and then proceeds to do exactly the same thing.

The dialogue is marvelous. In one scene the blind butler serves non-existent soup from an empty bowl, to which Miss Marbles (Elsa Lanchester) protests: "Murder by starvation, maybe that's his game". In another scene, Inspector Perrier (James Coco) reads from a list, and then concludes: "Everything here has been rented for tonight". Miss Marbles responds in a melodramatic voice: "You mean?" "Yes", answers Perrier momentously: "this entire murder has been -- catered".

And then there's the scene wherein Sam Diamond (Peter Falk) ruminates: "I don't get it; first they steal the body and leave the clothes; then they steal the clothes and bring the body back. Who would do a thing like that?" To which Dick Charleston (David Niven) responds in a serious tone: "Possibly some deranged dry cleaner".

The film's casting is wonderful. Truman Capote may not be much of an actor, but he brings to the film a personality that is appropriately eccentric. My only problem is that the amount of screen time for the cast is uneven ... too much for Peter Falk and Peter Sellers, and not enough for Elsa Lanchester, who arrives late.

"Murder By Death" is a wonderful film classic that still holds up thirty years after it was made. The film conveys no heavy-duty political or social "message", no great insight into the human condition. But when you're in the mood for lighthearted, escapist entertainment that provides some laughs, this film is a great choice.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (154 total) »

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