5.9/10
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47 user 22 critic

The Big Sleep (1978)

Grizzled American private detective in England investigates a complicated case of blackmail turned murder involving a rich but honest elderly general, his two loose socialite daughters, a pornographer and a gangster.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Lash Canino
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Agnes Lozelle
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Joe Brody
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Inspector Jim Carson
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General Sternwood
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Eddie Mars
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Norris
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Harry Jones
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Commander Barker
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Mona Grant
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Inspector Gregory
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Arthur Geiger
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Storyline

Philip Marlowe is asked by the elderly (and near death) General Sternwood to investigate an attempt at blackmail on one of his daughters. He soon finds that the attempt is halfhearted at best and seems to be more connected with the disappearance of the other daughter's husband, Rusty Regan. Rusty's wife, seems unconcerned with his disappearance, further complicating the mystery. Only General Sternwood seems concerned as mobsters and hired killers continue to appear in the path of the investigation. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Some days business is good - and some days it's murder! See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

7 April 1978 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Tote schlafen besser  »

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Box Office

Budget:

£3,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Robert Mitchum impressed Oliver Reed on set by drinking a bottle of gin in 55 minutes. See more »

Goofs

When Marlowe brings Camilla home from Geiger's house, the shot from the car to the Sternwood's door shows Marlowe's car door open. The reverse shot from the house out to the car shows his car door shut. See more »

Quotes

Philip Marlowe: [of Mrs. Regan] She'd make a jazzy weekend, but she'd be a bit wearing for a steady diet.
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Connections

Referenced in Pour la peau d'un flic (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

Won't Somebody Dance With Me
Music & Lyrics Lynsey de Paul
Sung by Diana Quick
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Big Mistake, The (1978)
31 July 1999 | by See all my reviews

Chandler's novel is pushed ahead by about 40 years. His Philip Marlowe is aged about 30 years. The location is changed by the combined breadth of the United States and the Atlantic Ocean. It should come as no surprise that this doesn't work at all. The scandal from which Marlowe shields the old man was so much more significant in the period in which the book was set. (Who, for example, really would be heart-broken or even especially shocked to learn in 1978 that his daughter had been photographed in the nude? Granted, that the secrets get darker, but the point is that so much is diluted.) Mitchum is a very, very fine actor, and when he was, say, 30 to 40 years old he would have been a good choice to play Marlowe; but an important aspect of Marlowe is exactly that he is so weary of spirit while still a relatively young man; we expect the old to feel old. And...a film noir in the English country-side? I don't think so!


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