6.5/10
1,274
24 user 18 critic

Gumshoe (1971)

Inspired by his love for Dashiell Hammett novels, nightclub comedian Eddie Ginley puts an ad in the paper as a private eye. The case he gets turns out to be a strange setup and as he digs to the bottom of it his life starts falling apart.

Director:

Stephen Frears

Writer:

Neville Smith
Reviews

Watch Now

With Prime Video

ON DISC
ALL
Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 1 win. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Town on Trial (1957)
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

At a local tennis club in a posh London suburb, an attractive but flirty young woman is murdered, prompting a Scotland Yard investigation.

Director: John Guillermin
Stars: John Mills, Charles Coburn, Barbara Bates
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A married writer has an affair with his secretary.

Director: Albert Finney
Stars: Albert Finney, Colin Blakely, Billie Whitelaw
Loophole (1981)
Adventure | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

When architect Stephen Booker loses his partnership, he finds jobs hard to come by, and with money in short supply, he unwittingly becomes involved in a daring scheme to rob one of London's biggest bank vaults.

Director: John Quested
Stars: Albert Finney, Martin Sheen, Susannah York
Alpha Beta (1974)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

The burning end of an unhappy relationship.

Director: Anthony Page
Stars: Albert Finney, Rachel Roberts
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A rebellious, hard-living factory worker juggles relationships with two women, one of whom is married to another man but pregnant with his child.

Director: Karel Reisz
Stars: Albert Finney, Shirley Anne Field, Rachel Roberts
Georgy Girl (1966)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A homely but vivacious young woman dodges the amorous attentions of her father's middle-aged employer while striving to capture some of the glamorous life of her swinging London roommate.

Director: Silvio Narizzano
Stars: James Mason, Alan Bates, Lynn Redgrave
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Alfie Byrne is a middle-aged bus conductor in Dublin in 1963. He would appear to live a life of quiet desperation: he's gay, but firmly closeted, and his sister is always trying to find him... See full summary »

Director: Suri Krishnamma
Stars: Albert Finney, Brenda Fricker, Michael Gambon
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

In England, two criminals kidnap a child for ransom and make their ransom demands in a disguised voice from a phone booth.

Director: Frank Nesbitt
Stars: Dan Duryea, Isa Miranda, Gwen Watford
The Reckoning (1970)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Michael Marler, a successful business man in London, is about to make his way to the top. The death of his father brings him - after five years - back to his hometown Liverpool, where he is... See full summary »

Director: Jack Gold
Stars: Nicol Williamson, Ann Bell, Lilita De Barros
Orphans (1987)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

The two brothers Treat and Philip lived alone since they were kids. Interdependent they dwell in a loft house and live on little thefts, until an aging minor criminal moves in with them and takes over the role of a father.

Director: Alan J. Pakula
Stars: Albert Finney, Matthew Modine, Kevin Anderson
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Archie Rice, an old-time British music hall performer sinking into final defeat, schemes to stay in show business.

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Laurence Olivier, Brenda de Banzie, Roger Livesey
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A small time thief is recruited by a mobster to help with the racketeering. He doesn't like the job, but with the mob on his back, a femme fatale in his bed and a sick friend to care for, he will have to keep all his wits about him.

Director: John Lemont
Stars: Herbert Lom, Sean Connery, John Gregson
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Albert Finney ... Eddie Ginley
Billie Whitelaw ... Ellen
Frank Finlay ... William
Janice Rule ... Mrs. Blankerscoon
Carolyn Seymour ... Alison
Fulton Mackay ... Straker
George Innes ... Bookshop Proprietor
George Silver George Silver ... De Fries
Bill Dean ... Tommy (as Billy Dean)
Wendy Richard ... Anne Scott
Maureen Lipman ... Naomi
Neville Smith Neville Smith ... Arthur
Oscar James Oscar James ... Azinge
Joe Kenyon Joe Kenyon ... Joey (as Joey Kenyon)
Bert King Bert King ... Mal
Edit

Storyline

Ginley (Albert Finney) is a nightclub bingo caller eager for a career change. On his thirty-first birthday, he advertises himself as a private eye in the newspaper. He dons a trench coat, and begins engaging others in rapid-fire dialogue as if he were Humphrey Bogart, or some Dashiell Hammett creation. Soon after, Ginley is phoned by a fat man, who gives him a package containing a gun, a photograph, and a large sum of money. Eventually Ginley is investigating a case involving smuggling of weapons as well as drugs. Ginley also finds himself at odds with his unsupportive brother, who offers Ginley payment to break off his investigations. Eventually Ginley learns of his brother-in-law's involvement in the crimes at hand. Ginley faces a series of daunting tasks: solving the crimes, bringing justice to the smugglers (and a murderer), as well as maintaining his safety and sanity in the process. Written by veloc <velo_00@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

the sleuth, the whole sleuth and nothing but the sleuth See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 April 1972 (Ireland) See more »

Also Known As:

Auf leisen Sohlen See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The package that Eddie Ginley (Albert Finney) received from The Fat Man included a gun, one thousand pounds, and a photograph of a girl. This was colloquially referred to in the movie as "A girl, a gun and a grand". See more »

Quotes

Psychiatrist: Eddie, you know what? You're a bloody nut!
Eddie Ginley: I owe it all to you, doc.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening Columbia logo does not have the Columbia name on it, just the lady with the torch. See more »

Connections

References Mighty Joe Young (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

These Foolish Things
(uncredited)
Music by Jack Strachey
Lyrics by Eric Maschwitz
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Strange cult movie that is not for everyone.
19 October 2005 | by Pedro_HSee all my reviews

A Liverpool bingo caller of the 70's enlivens his dull life by taking on an old style private detective alter-ego. Complete with raincoat and accent!

This is one of my favourite cult movies and this might be a good chance to try and look inside my own mind and find out why. Leading with the negatives, this film has a few ideas, but not enough to make a full film out of them. If you feel that some of the scenes are padding (quite a lot actually) then you are right!

Finney fancies himself as a kind of Sam Spade let loose on a Liverpool of the 1970's (interesting to see it like it was in the 60's) and we enter the slightly seedy world of the working man's club. Something that those outside of the UK will find hard to grasp -- a kind of cheap private drinking hole meets low rent cabaret.

The real problem is that the thing is weakened by non of the parties (especially the lead) seeming to be taking the case seriously, which means that while he is in limited danger we are more yawning than sitting on the edge of our seats.

What makes it for me is the fast word play of Finney and the general irony of the script in going in to places that fashion says we shouldn't be going. It leads up to a giant feeling of so-what -- but I like to see movies that are a bit different and it always holds me in its strange faded and seedy grip. Maybe it has something to do with having been to these sorts of places myself.


24 of 28 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 24 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed