6.9/10
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Harper (1966)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Mystery | 9 April 1966 (Italy)
Lew Harper, a cool private investigator, is hired by a wealthy California matron to locate her kidnapped husband.

Director:

Jack Smight

Writers:

William Goldman (screenplay), Ross Macdonald (novel)

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1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Newman ... Lew Harper
Lauren Bacall ... Mrs. Sampson
Julie Harris ... Betty Fraley
Arthur Hill ... Albert Graves
Janet Leigh ... Susan Harper
Pamela Tiffin ... Miranda Sampson
Robert Wagner ... Allan Taggert
Robert Webber ... Dwight Troy
Shelley Winters ... Fay Estabrook
Harold Gould ... Sheriff
Roy Jenson ... Puddler (as Roy Jensen)
Strother Martin ... Claude
Martin West ... Deputy
Jacqueline deWit ... Mrs. Kronberg (as Jacqueline de Wit)
Eugene Iglesias ... Felix
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Storyline

Lew Harper is a Los Angeles based private investigator whose marriage to Susan Harper, who he still loves, is ending in imminent divorce since she can't stand being second fiddle to his work, which is always taking him away at the most inopportune of times. His latest client is tough talking and physically disabled Elaine Sampson, who wants him to find her wealthy husband, Ralph Sampson, missing now for twenty-four hours, ever since he disappeared at Van Nuys Airport after having just arrived from Vegas. No one seems to like Ralph, Elaine included. She believes he is cavorting with some woman, which to her would be more a fact than a problem. Harper got the case on the recommendation of the Sampsons' lawyer and Harper's personal friend, milquetoast Albert Graves, who is unrequitedly in love with Sampson's seductive daughter, Miranda Sampson. Miranda, who Harper later states throws herself at anything "pretty in pants", also has a decidedly cold relationship with her stepmother, Elaine... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

This is a different kind of cat named Harper... and excitement clings to him like a dame! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 April 1966 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Ein Fall für Harper See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The title of the Ross Macdonald's source novel "The Moving Target" was this picture's title in Great Britain. See more »

Goofs

In the final scene, when Albert Graves (Arthur Hill) prepares to aim his revolver, there is an unmistakable sound of the revolver being cocked. Then, in a close-up of Graves aiming the revolver, the hammer is in an uncocked position. See more »

Quotes

Deputy Sheriff: Okay, put them up.
Lew Harper: Put what up?
See more »

Alternate Versions

When originally released theatrically in the UK, the BBFC made cuts to secure a 'A' rating. All cuts were waived in 1995 when the film was granted a '12' certificate for home video. See more »

Connections

Followed by The Drowning Pool (1975) See more »

Soundtracks

Livin' Alone
Words by Dory Previn
Music by André Previn
Sung by Julie Harris (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Newman acclaimed as the new Bogart…
6 January 2009 | by Nazi_Fighter_DavidSee all my reviews

The film opens with Harper (Newman), unshaven and gradually awakening from a hangover… He puts his head under a faucet, attempts to make coffee but finds none left, and dispiritedly takes yesterday's grounds from the garbage and makes a perfect1y terrible cup of coffee… At once we get Harper's image as an antihero detective without any illusions…

As he is commissioned by Lauren Bacall to trace her wealthy husband who has been kidnapped, the details are filled in: he's tough, ironic, cool, unpleasant and repugnant… Although occasionally given to a moment of sensitivity or remorse, he's most1y sadistic and exploitative…

Harper is a loner, with an air of detachment and an ability to dispatch opponents with a fist and a flippant remark… He swings into action only mechanically… He chews gum constantly, looks around in an uninteresting manner, makes little disapproving gestures, laughs in total disregards, and smiles mischievously…

Harper's dealings with women are based exclusively on coldness, deception and sexual exploitation… He is estranged from his wife and would like to renew his marriage…


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