5.8/10
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7 user 14 critic

Peeper (1975)

In 1947, a smart-mouthed Brit working in L.A. as a private eye (or peeper) is on a case to find the long lost daughter of a shady client pursued by two dangerous goons. The case leads him to a rich oddball Beverly Hills family.

Director:

Peter Hyams

Writers:

Keith Laumer (novel), W.D. Richter
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Caine ... Leslie C. Tucker
Natalie Wood ... Ellen Prendergast
Kitty Winn ... Mianne Prendergast
Michael Constantine ... Anglich
Thayer David ... Frank Prendergast
Timothy Carey ... Sid (as Timothy Agoglia Carey)
Liam Dunn ... Billy Pate
Don Calfa ... Rosie
Margo Winkler Margo Winkler ... Woman with luggage
Harvey J. Goldenberg ... Mailman
Dorothy Adams ... Mrs. Prendergast
Buffy Dee ... Bazooka Himself
Gary Combs ... Torpedo
Robert Ito ... Butler
Snag Werris Snag Werris ... Comic
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Storyline

In 1947, a smart-mouthed Brit working in L.A. as a private eye (or peeper) is on a case to find the long lost daughter of a shady client pursued by two dangerous goons. The case leads him to a rich oddball Beverly Hills family.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Back in '47, a gun was a roscoe, a private-eye was a Peeper, and murder was okay as long as nobody got hurt. In fact, anything was okay with this Peeper on the case because he wouldn't know who-done-it even if he done it himself.

Genres:

Comedy | Crime | Mystery

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 December 1975 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fat Chance See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The name of the central private eye character in Keith Laumer's source novel was called Joe Shaw. The character's name was changed to Leslie C. Tucker for this movie. The Australian home video sleeve notes described Tucker as a "Phillip Marlowe-type". See more »

Goofs

The road stripes during the car chase are wrong for the period. The road has a double yellow centerline and yellow road reflectors. Yellow centerlines were not adopted in the USA until 1971. The bridge railings are also too modern for the period. See more »

Quotes

Anglich: Listen to me, I put my kid in an orphanage 29 years ago. It was a nice place; trees, flowers, other kids to play with. And I had to go away, on business. You get the picture?
Anglich: When you came back, she was gone - and you are holding my shirt. Thank you.
Anglich: Only two years later, they give her away to some stranger.
Leslie C. Tucker: She was adopted you mean?
Anglich: Adopted! The place is a pawn shop. I got a hold of this mug that worked there, charged me 75 dollars - in 1919, that's a million - anyhow, told me she was took by ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits are spoken by a Humphrey Bogart impersonator. See more »

Soundtracks

Give Me the Simple Life
(uncredited)
Music by Rube Bloom
Played on the piano at the Penguin Lounge
See more »

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User Reviews

A forgotten gem
13 August 2003 | by relizaSee all my reviews

This is one of those movies that is just immensely good fun. First of all, it has an excellent cast. Caine is wonderful as the world-weary London private eye adrift in Los Angeles. Michael Constantine, as the ex-con desperate to find his daughter, has never been better. Natalie is very good as the satin-clad femme fatale. And then there's the outstanding supporting cast. In a sense, this film is a tribute to character actors. Even the unappreciated Robert Ito shows up as the sinister Japanese butler.

But even given the cast, what really shines is the W. D. Richter's script. Especially our hero's brilliant analysis of the location of a house based on the angle of the sun and the shadows it casts, followed by his discovery that: "I wasn't even close. It was in Beverly Hills."

On the other hand, your favorite bit may be the Humphrey Bogart impersonator reciting the credits at the beginning of the film to the accompaniment of a lone trumpet (at least, that's how I remember it; actually, since the other reviewer and I seem to be the only people in the world who have actually seen this film, who's to argue?) It's a sad fact that Peeper has been dumped. It doesn't even appear on most filmographies of Michael Caine. It's not available on video in any form, and I have never seen it appear on television (maybe we can persuade The Mystery Channel to show it, if the tape hasn't disintegrated by now). So if there's a patron saint of forgotten films wandering around this site, why don't you see if you can nudge 20th Century Fox into releasing it. It deserves better.


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