The Maltese Falcon

The Maltese Falcon

Blu-ray Disc - 1941
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After his partner is murdered, private investigator Sam Spade searches for the killer while also involving himself in a mystery surrounding the existence of a jewel-encrusted statue known as the Maltese falcon.
Publisher: Burbank, CA : Warner Home Video, 1941
Edition: High definition
ISBN: 9781419896255
Branch Call Number: MAL
Characteristics: 1 Blu-ray disc (100 min.) : sd., b&w. ; 12 cm

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VonHafenstaaad
Nov 24, 2020

A good movie tells a story that hooks the audience. It creates curiosity. It causes something to happen as a result of a person's actions. The movie The Maltese Falcon satisfies these requirements, because John Huston the director story-boarded every frame of the film before he started filming. His picture drawings created the movie in a linear sequence of illustrations. In other words, Huston graphically organized the narrative. This is the reason the actors are so memorable. The quote that headlines my review was spoken by the actor Sydney Greenstreet as the fat man Kasper Gutman. Could you possibly imagine any other actor than Greenstreet as Gutman? Could you imagine any other actor than Humphrey Bogart as Sam Spade or Mary Astor as Ruth Wonderly? Of course not! However, let's not get carried away. Let's simply say that an enduring, memorable film has a beginning, a middle, and an end that tells a story and leave it at that. Too many people in Hollywood today have forgotten this fact!

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Bubba_Louie
Nov 21, 2020

To say that "The Maltese Falcon" could've been a whole better than it was would truly be an understatement like no other. It's true.

I mean, this vintage motion picture was apparently a real box-office hit when it was first released back in 1941. But, with a story as confused as it was, I can't imagine that "The Maltese Falcon" was actually looked upon as being an important offering to its audience.

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ManMachine
Aug 28, 2018

Clearly a product of its time - 1941's "The Maltese Falcon" is (IMO) very much like taking a somewhat rocky, little stroll down old "Memory Lane".

While WW2 raged on over in Europe - "The Maltese Falcon" was just the sort of film that certainly proved to be one of the best kinds of escapism from the horrors of reality for American audiences back home.

Personally, I found this picture to be somewhat confusing in its storytelling.

I think it's interesting to note that author, Dashiell Hammett (whose 1930 novel of the same name was used as this film's basis) was blacklisted as a "Commie" in 1953 during the vicious McCarthy witch hunts.

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Derringer
Oct 14, 2017

76 years old and still ticking (?) - Barely.

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ManMachine
Oct 11, 2017

Last night I was feeling in a bit of a nostalgic mood. And, so - With that, I decided to take a stroll down Hollywood's "Memory Lane" with 1941's "The Maltese Falcon".

Loosely based on the 1930 novel (of the same name) penned by famous crime-writer, Dashiell Hammett (who, in 1953, was blacklisted) - The Maltese Falcon (clearly a product of its time) actually turned out to be a bit of a let-down (though not a major one) for me.

Now, I'm certainly not going to get into trashing this John Huston production in a big way - But I will say that this film has not aged well and its story clearly left a whole lot to be desired.

c
CurlyWhirly
Oct 06, 2017

Now nearly 80 years old - This vintage, Hollywood crime-drama from 1941 was OK at best. It really hasn't aged very well. And the performances were almost laughable at times.

Very wooden acting and stock characterizations. There are irregularities in the plot line that would not be tolerated in a modern movie. The movie was frustratingly out of date.

t
trcookIIImddmd
Jun 17, 2017

Not totally boring, but close; few old movies appeal to my sound bite sensibility--The action is just too slow. I'm looking forward to Baby Driver, Ronin being one of my favorite films.

EuSei Mar 10, 2015

Like Sam Spade, in the book the reader is left to wonder what is the big secret his client is keeping. The movie loses a lot of suspense by letting the viewer into it immediately. I don’t think Bogart was (physically) able to convey the Mephistophelian looks Hammett intended for Spade, but he did a very good job. Bogart made a more charming, not a so slimy sort of hard-boiled dick. Mary Astor most definitely conveyed the character’s psychological traits, not her beauty and youth—Miss Astor was then 35 years old, ten years too old for Hammet’s Brigid. I loved Peter Lorre as the effeminate Joel Cairo; but unfortunately Gladys George couldn’t get in the skin of the sexy Iva Archer of the book. Although a film noir, it didn’t carry to the screen the heaviness the book pages exuded. All in all, it was a very good movie, that I enjoyed more than the book--and kept quite close to the book's plot.

a
akirakato
Mar 09, 2015

This is a 1941 film noir based on the novel of the same name by Dashiell Hammett.
The story follows a San Francisco private detective and his dealings with three unscrupulous adventurers, all of whom are competing to obtain a jewel-encrusted falcon statuette.
In 1539 the Knight Templars of Malta paid tribute to Charles V of Spain by sending him a Golden Falcon encrusted from beak to claw with rarest jewels.
But pirates seized the galley carrying this priceless token.
The fate of the Maltese Falcon remains a mystery to this day.
It would be much more fascinating if the director looked into this mystery.

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Quotes

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m
Monolith
Nov 15, 2014

Joel Cairo: "You always have a very smooth explanation..." Sam Spade: "What do you want me to do, learn to stutter?"

m
Monolith
Mar 06, 2012

Detective Tom Polhaus (picks up the falcon): "Heavy. What is it?" Sam Spade: "The... stuff that dreams are made of."

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Monolith
Mar 06, 2012

Sam Spade (to Joel Cairo): "When you're slapped, you'll take it and like it."

m
Monolith
Mar 06, 2012

Sam Spade (to Effie Perine): "You're a good man, sister."

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