MURDER, MY SWEET (1944) B/W 95m dir: Edward Dmytryk

w/Dick Powell, Claire Trevor, Anne Shirley, Otto Kruger, Mike Mazurki, Miles Mander, Douglas Walton, Don Douglas, Ralf Harolde, Esther Howard

From The Movie Guide: "Near perfect, my sweet. Hard-boiled detective Philip Marlowe (Powell) is hired by ex-con Moose Malloy (Mazurki) to find his missing girlfriend Velma. Shortly thereafter, Marlowe is hired by socialite Mrs. Grayle (Trevor) to find a valuable jade necklace that has been stolen from her. Dividing his time between the seedy underworld and the ritzy digs of the upper class, Marlowe finds blackmail, doublecrosses, corruption, and murder on both sides of the tracks. Much to Marlowe's surprise, both cases dovetail into one. Considered one of the quintessential film noir films, this tough, sardonic, and unusually witty film brought one-time movie crooner Powell back from the brink of career catastrophe and made him a superstar. Not even Humphrey Bogart's portrayal of Marlowe in THE BIG SLEEP could match Powell's portrayal of the down-and-out gumshoe. Director Edward Dmytryk uses every cinematic trick in the book here, creating a truly bleak and disorienting netherworld populated by a variety of sordid characters. Here's Mazurki's best in his catalogue of hoods, our fave Shirley performance, but it's Miss Trevor who rises to the top, like a dangerous cup of poisoned cream, viewing after viewing."

MURDER, MY SWEET was written by John Paxton, based on Raymond Chandler's novel, Farewell, My Lovely.