Monday, January 23, 2012

Movie: Another Thin Man



Another Thin Man
From a story by Dashiell Hammett
1939


He says his name is Charles, but he looks to me like a pool parlor dude.

Say what you want about Nick and Nora but you sure can't say they don't get around. After doing time on the East and West coasts in the first two installments they're headed back east again for Another Thin Man. This time around, in addition to having lovable pup Asta in tow, they've also got one Nick Charles Jr. along for the ride.

This installment finds the Charles entourage called to the home of a wealthy family friend who is upset because he feels that someone is going to kill him. Well, guess what? From here on out it's the usual Thin Man formula of shenanigans mixed with sleuthing until most or all of the concerned parties are gathered together at the end for the great reveal.

The hard partying of the first two installments seems to have abated perhaps just a bit, but after all the Nick and Nora are parents now. And there's a first birthday party for Nick Jr. that's so over the top and ridiculous that it makes all the cutesy-poo kiddie stuff easier to bear. Look for a walk-on part from Shemp Howard (who also turned up in a Lone Wolf movies I watched recently) as a parent of one of these young partiers.

While the consensus among most who have an opinion seems to be that the first or second of the Thin Man movies are the best I think I liked this one just a little more than the others. I can't quite put a finger on why. There's just something about it.

2 comments:

  1. Julian Symons in his biography of Hammett singled this out for praise as (partly as Hammett worked on the script) but also because he thought it was particularly solidly constructed as a mystery, calling it '...the best of the five [sequels]', especially for the strength of Sheldon Leonard's performance as the man who claims to be able to dream of a murder which will then be committed. For me the first three are without question the best of the THIN MAN movies and a summit of the 30s comedy thriller genre.

    Cheers,
    Sergio

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  2. TCM showed the whole bunch of the Thin Man movies in late December. I would have taped them all but my DVR was at capacity. Looking forward to seeing the last three.

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