A private detective is hired to retrieve a valuable antique coin that was stolen from its owner by her son, who used it to pay off a blackmailer. The private eye soon finds himself up to ... See full summary »
A secretive widower hires a governess for his children, a willful boy and impressionable girl. Strange occurrences and the governess's curiosity lead her to unlock the secrets of the mysterious and uninhabited brownstone next door.
Philip Marlowe is hired when a rare doubloon is stolen, and he soon discovers that it is being used for blackmail purposes. Marlowe's involvement has him encounter a girl who goes into hysterics when touched by a man; a domineering mother; three corpses; a couple of scuffles in which he gets his clock cleaned; a secretary who killed her boss, which is the reason Raymond Chandler called his story "The High Window", and a rich boy (who qualifies as a S.O.B. by two definitions) who is having trouble with the Mafia. So, what's not to like. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I was sore at myself for coming all the way out to Pasadena on a day like that just to see about a case. And how I hate summer winds - they come in suddenly off the Mojave Desert and you can taste sand for a week. I knew it was the voice of the girl on the phone that had got me and I was reminding myself how often your ears play a dirty trick on your eyes - but this time there was no let down...
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Marlowe (George Montgomery) is hired to recover a rare coin. His investigations reveal several murders and unearth secrets of a wealthy Pasadena household.
_The Brasher Doubloon_ is clearly second tier, with at least one scene in Marlowe's office copied directly (and painfully directly) from _The Maltese Falcon._ If the characters are stereotypes and Montgomery's voice over shy-making in its adolescent appreciation of Merle Davis's beauty, the pacing and plot movement are still satisfactorily brisk. Florence Bates is perfect as the crusty, port-sodden Elizabeth Bright Murdock, and the night club goons look just right. It's not a masterpiece but is a diverting hour and a half. The final revelation is ingeniously presented as it involves a film-within-the-film and the way in which this key piece of evidence for the story came into being is more concretely explained in the movie than in Chandler's original, the one way in which the motion picture is superior to the published novel.
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