Mild-mannered mystery writer D. H. Mercer has become so immersed in his material that his creation, hard-boiled private eye Biff Deegan constantly appears to him as a hallucination. Intent ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
D.H. 'Hank' Mercer / Biff Deegan
...
Marissa
...
Lieutenant Greenberg
...
Victor Greville
...
Claire
Jonathan Moore ...
Nicholas Rubinstein
Martin Neufeld ...
Pete
Bunty Webb
Robin Ward
Eric Fink
Thick Wilson
Al Bernardo
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Storyline

Mild-mannered mystery writer D. H. Mercer has become so immersed in his material that his creation, hard-boiled private eye Biff Deegan constantly appears to him as a hallucination. Intent on getting rid of Biff, and replacing him with a more civilized detective, Mercer soon finds himself in a genuine mystery involving art fraud, murder, and a beautiful lady in peril. Written by Mark Limvere-Robinson

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Unrated | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

17 March 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alter Ego  »

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1.33 : 1
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Filmed in 1985 but not broadcast until 1987. See more »

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User Reviews

 
TV movie from the '80s
30 July 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Murder by the Book," also known as "Alter Ego," is a 1987 TV movie starring Robert Hays and Catherine Mary Stewart. The film also features Fred Gwynne and Celeste Holm.

Hays plays a mystery writer, D.H. "Hank" Mercer who writes stories about a hard-boiled detective, Biff Deegan. He's grown tired of Biff, and he tells his agent he has a new idea for a character. While in a restaurant with his agent, he sees a pretty young woman (and you know it's the '80s because her hair goes out about three feet) being forced into a car. The perpetrator is an extremely wealthy man (Gwynne).

Mercer is determined to find out what is going on. While doing so, his fictional detective starts showing up and giving him advice.

Cute. Hays is such a likable and attractive actor, one wonders why the success of "Airport" didn't translate into some better vehicles for him.

This is really light as air, but enjoyable nonetheless.


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