Private eye Philip Marlowe (Humphrey Bogart) stalks his way through the crime-ridden Los Angeles nightlife of the 1940s to try to crack a case involving a rich general and his partying daughters (Lauren Bacall and Martha Vickers). The chemistry of Bogart and Bacall is so strong and the dialogue so quote-worthy, you may not even care that the plot is famously confusing. (dir. Howard Hawks, 1946, U.S, 116 min.)
“…it is one of the great film noirs, a black-and-white symphony that exactly reproduces Chandler’s ability, on the page, to find a tone of voice that keeps its distance, and yet is wry and humorous and cares.” – Roger Ebert
Dana Polan: The author of 11 books in film including Duke University Press’s new series, Spin-offs, on individual television shows. He is the former president of the Society for Cinema Studies, the professional society for film, and a former editor of its publication, Cinema Journal. His most recent book is Dreams of Flight: The Great Escape in American Film and Culture (University of California Press, 2021). His BFI Classics volume on Close Encounters of the Third Kind is forthcoming. Other recent books include Scenes of Instruction: The Beginnings of the U.S. Study of Film (UC Press, 2007), The Sopranos (Duke University Press, 2009). He has done seven DVD commentaries including, most recently, The Third Man (Criterion Collection).