6.5/10
3,153
60 user 8 critic

The Cheap Detective (1978)

San Francisco, 1940, detectives, dames, documents, Nazis, and a treasure.

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ON DISC
1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Ezra Dezire
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Bess
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Marcel
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Pepe Damascus
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Hoppy
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Sgt. Rizzuto
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Boy
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Storyline

Lou Peckinpaugh, the Cheap detective has entered a world that is half Casablanca and half Maltese Falcon. A parody of Bogart's films in which Lou goes through a series of scenes from the two movies trying to keep ahead of the police who think he killed his partner and find the black bird. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Who dunnit? This time it's Neil Simon who's really dunnit. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

23 June 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Neil Simon's The Cheap Detective  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In order to cash in on the box-office success of this film's predecessor Murder by Death (1976) (which was a parody of locked-room mystery thrillers), some posters for this follow up (which is different, a spoof of 1940s private eye, film noir and foreign intrigue thrillers) were designed with cartoons of 15 characters (evoking a cast of suspects) situated under a giant headline that read "Who Dunnit?". See more »

Goofs

The movie takes place in 1940, yet the song sung in the nightclub is 'La Vie En Rose' which was not written until 1946. See more »

Quotes

Lou Peckinpaugh: Don't be stubborn, you crazy Frenchman. Time is on their side!
Bess: I don't think he's being stubborn - I think he's being dead!
Lou Peckinpaugh: Just once I'd like to see somebody die *regular* on this case!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: In 1939, the ominous grey clouds of war broke loose over Western Europe and rained down havoc and destruction . . . followed by humidity and gradual clearing.

In the Philippines, a small band of native guerrillas prepared secretly for the inevitable conflict that would soon engulf the East . . . This has nothing to do with our story.

Our story is about crime. Not the bad crime we face each day on our streets . . . but the good crime we came to know and love in a time when the world was innocent ... when murder wasn't something you were ashamed of ... when a bullet hole wasn't something disgusting . . . and when a man could betray a woman without feeling guilty. Our story starts in a fictitious city called San Francisco ... seven thousand miles away from Casablanca. See more »

Connections

Spoofs The Big Sleep (1946) See more »

Soundtracks

La Marseillaise
(uncredited)
Written by Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle
Played at the arrival of the DuChards
Also sung at Nix Place
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Does not quite find the mark
27 October 2003 | by (.: Fiendish Writings in the Dark :.) – See all my reviews

Looking for (but not quite finding) the footsteps of "Murder by Death."

While I love this movie and watch it quite often, it is a rather cheesy knock-off of "Murder by Death." This time spoofing "The Maltese Falcon" and "Casablanca," Neil Simon's hit or miss style misses this time, but only by a small margin.

This movie is not hilarious, nor exceptionally intelligent comedy, but it is still very entertaining. I honestly found "Murder by Death" to be a much more enjoyable experience.

That having been said, this star-studded cast puts forth at least a valid attempt to pull off this sometimes haphazardly written screen play, and hits at least 2 out of 5 punch lines with some effect.

If you are a fan of the Bogie movies which it satirizes, this is definitely a must-see. It is you, for which this movie was written in the first place.

It rates a 6.5/10 from...

the Fiend :.


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