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Fictional account of real-life mystery writer Dashiell Hammett, and his involvement in the investigation of a beautiful Chinese cabaret actress' mysterious disappearance in San Francisco.

Director:

Wim Wenders

Writers:

Joe Gores (novel), Dennis O'Flaherty | 2 more credits »
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Frederic Forrest ... Hammett
Peter Boyle ... Jimmy Ryan
Marilu Henner ... Kit Conger / Sue Alabama
Roy Kinnear ... English Eddie Hagedorn
Elisha Cook Jr. ... Eli the Taxi Driver (as Elisha Cook)
Lydia Lei ... Crystal Ling
R.G. Armstrong ... Lt. O'Mara
Richard Bradford ... Detective Bradford
Michael Chow ... Fong Wei Tau
David Patrick Kelly ... The Punk
Sylvia Sidney ... Donaldina Cameron
Jack Nance ... Gary Salt
Elmer Kline Elmer Kline ... Doc Fallon
Royal Dano ... Pops
Samuel Fuller ... Old Man in Pool Hall
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Storyline

The novel writer Dashiell Hammett is involved in the investigation of the mysterious disappearance of a beautiful Chinese cabaret actress in San Francisco. Written by Michel Rudoy <mdrc@hp9000a1.uam.mx>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The mystery writer who lived his own stories ! [Video] See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 September 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Investigación en el Barrio Chino See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,222, 19 September 1982, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$42,914
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Zoetrope Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Wim Wenders made a 17 minute short film called "Reverse Angle" [Reverse Angle: Ein Brief aus New York (1982)] which was partially about the making of this movie, the problems encountered and the alleged conflict he had with Francis Ford Coppola. Wenders' website says of it: "In this segment, Wenders juxtaposes "New Wave" music, a neon lit Manhattan, the "Hammett (1982)" editing rooms, a session with Francis Ford Coppola, a book by Emmanuel Bove, and the paintings of Edward Hopper with his personal thoughts on the art of making movies in Europe and in America". See more »

Quotes

Doc Fallon: You know what my problem is? I'm a halfway honest man in a nine-tenths dishonest world. What's your problem?
Hammett: Suicide.
[takes a drink]
Doc Fallon: My advice? Don't hesitate.
See more »

Connections

References The Maltese Falcon (1941) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Good & Bad Of 'Hammet'
2 August 2007 | by ccthemovieman-1See all my reviews

GOOD - I enjoyed the 1920s look, the San Francisco-Chinatown locale and the nice set designs. It was interesting to see Marilu Henner from television's "Taxi" fame. I also was great fun to see one of my favorite actors from the classic film noir era, Elisha Cook Jr. Another classic star, Sylvia Sidney, also makes an appearance.

BAD - A somewhat convoluted story and several main male characters who are uninvolving - particularly lead character " Dashiell Hammett," played by Frederic Forest - make one lose interest in this story by the halfway point. If the lead doesn't connect with the audience, then the film is in trouble, which may explain why this movie is almost obscure. Peter Boyle, playing "Jimmy Ryan," also looked like he was reading his lines from a cue card. From what I've read, this film had a lot of production problems and much of the director Wim Wenders' work had to be re-shot by Francis Ford Copolla. Obviously, this project was a semi-disaster from the start. One thing they could have used: narration. It goes perfectly with this kind of story, and they didn't use it.

Overall, being a film noir buff I was very disappointed in this effort. I really wanted to like this movie. It should have been far better than it wound up, but at least I know now why the movie never made a name for itself.


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