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Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid (1982)

PG | | Comedy, Crime, Mystery | 21 May 1982 (USA)
Film noir parody with a detective uncovering a sinister plot. Characters from real noirs appear as scenes from various films are intercut.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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The Exterminator (archive footage)
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Leona Hastings-Forrest (archive footage)
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Sam Hastings (in 'Lost Weekend') (archive footage)
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Kitty Collins (archive footage)
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Swede Anderson (archive footage)
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Phillip Marlowe (archive footage)
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'Handsome' (in 'Suspicion') (archive footage)
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F.X. Huberman (archive footage)
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Monica Stillpond (archive footage)
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Doris Davermont (archive footage)
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Jimmi-Sue Altfeld (archive footage)
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Altfeld (archive footage)
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Storyline

Juliet Forrest is convinced that the reported death of her father in a mountain car crash was no accident. Her father was a prominent cheese scientist working on a secret recipe. To prove it was murder, she enlists the services of private eye Rigby Reardon. He finds a slip of paper containing a list of people who are "The Friends and Enemies of Carlotta." Searching for answers, Rigby encounters assorted low-lifes: dangerous men and women who were the hallmarks of the classic detective movies of the 40's and 50's. Filming in black and white allows scenes from old movies to be cut into this film. It is through this process that Rigby's assistant is none other than Philip Marlowe himself. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>, Ed. by Peter Victor <thevictor99@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Laugh... or I'll blow your lips off!


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 May 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dead Men Wear No Plaid  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,289,601, 23 May 1982, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$18,197,170
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The name of the cruise ship, "Immer Essen," is German for "always eating." See more »

Goofs

After Rigby kills Field Marshall VonKluck, his body falls across the table. In the following scene, his body can be seen in the background and he is still breathing. See more »

Quotes

Rigby Reardon: [dressed as Jarrett's mother] What do you think?
Juliet Forrest: I think you enjoy dressing up as a woman.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the Cast there comes the dedication: Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid was Edith Head's final film. To her, and to all the brilliant technical and creative people who worked on the films of the 1940's and 1950's, this motion picture is affectionately dedicated. See more »

Connections

Spoofs To Have and Have Not (1944) See more »

Soundtracks

Dead Men's Bolero
Music by Miklós Rózsa
Lyrics by Steve Goodman
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User Reviews

 
Confessions of a smitten bloke
21 January 2011 | by See all my reviews

I've never been a huge fan of Steve Martin's, so I often find myself watching his movies for his leading ladies; and while Peters, Danes and Turner are undoubtedly eye-candy, none of them quite match up to Rachel Ward at her finest – and here she is possibly even lovelier than she was in 'The Thornbirds'. She's also a surprisingly good foil for Martin; able to deliver some wonderfully outrageous lines absolutely deadpan, and without breaking character.

Inter-cutting new film with old wasn't new even when this piece came out, and I suspect the idea may have come from Martin's 'Pennies from Heaven' of the previous year (itself a copy of a BBC series from 1978); but the premise of using film noir was a stroke of genius and it's very slickly done. Unfortunately, a plot which starts out very well degenerates somewhat towards the end, perhaps hamstrung by the one-note comic style; but for the first hour it's an absolute joy to watch, and very funny indeed.

However, it has to be admitted that I watch it for Rachel - my dream woman of the early eighties and, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful ever to grace the silver screen. Bryan Brown, you're a lucky fella.


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