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The Golden Spiders: A Nero Wolfe Mystery (2000)

TV-PG | | TV Movie 5 March 2000
A street kid interrupts Nero Wolfe's dinner with his eyewitness account of a kidnapping. The next day, the boy is dead and his mother comes to the detective with her son's meager savings and dying wish to hire Wolfe to solve his murder.

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(novel), (teleplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Laura Fromm
Colin Fox ...
Fritz
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Jean Estey
Gary Reineke ...
Denis Horan
Beau Starr ...
Lips Egan
Elizabeth Saunders ...
Mrs. Horan (as Elizabeth Brown)
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Nancy Beatty ...
Mrs. Drossos
R.D. Reid ...
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James Maddox
Gerry Quigley ...
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Storyline

A street kid interrupts Nero Wolfe's dinner with his eyewitness account of a kidnapping. The next day, the boy is dead and his mother comes to the detective with her son's meager savings and dying wish to hire Wolfe to solve his murder.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

based on novel | See All (1) »

Taglines:

Three Perfect Murders. One Perfect Detective.

Certificate:

TV-PG
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Release Date:

5 March 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nero Wolfe si cerceii misteriosi  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Saul stated that he was in room 312 but the room number on the door was 57. See more »

Connections

Followed by A Nero Wolfe Mystery (2000) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Getting it right
6 March 2000 | by (Oakland, California) – See all my reviews

Whatever else might be said about the overall entertainment value of this production, Rex Stout would not be disappointed by the production decisions or the casting of this nicely drawn adaptation.

The movie is brimming with gorgeous period details, handsome Studebakers and drab office waiting rooms. The physical characteristics of Wolfe's entire world in a brownstone appear here to be spot on, as though the producers were preparing it for the famously particular sleuth himself. Maury Chaykin brings to his character the thought, care, and gravitas worthy of a King Lear, and manages to present a Nero Wolfe at once psychically wounded, showcat-finicky, masculine, compulsive about his orderly routine, insightful in the workings of others, and a little bit clueless about himself. Although the violence of his angry outbursts seems a little overmodulated, a better choice for the role is hard to imagine.

Archie Goodwin is a less boldly written role, but in this production he seems fully realized and very natural. Timothy Hutton gets the right tone when Archie is dealing with his exacting boss, and it doesn't seem at all odd that this smart aleck would be loyal to a man who routinely tells him where to sit. (The entire snoop team's devotion to Wolfe is palpable, felt not so much in what's said as in what need not be said. All this seems like a minor miracle in a TV movie.) Archie seems very much to enjoy manipulating the hapless participants in the mystery, as though escorting guests out the door before they are ready is wicked fun. (Only Bruce Willis -circa 1988- comes to mind as closer to the ideal Archie - you really don't want to see Tim Hutton's Archie take a punch.)

The plot's something of a tangle, and women characters don't get a chance to shine, but these shortcomings go straight back to Rex Stout. The joys of this story are in the unique and symbiotic relationship of Nero Wolfe and Archie, and in the mystery of a detective whose gifts of insight stop just short of the bathroom mirror.


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