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  • The Long Goodbye (Widescreen)
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The Long Goodbye (Widescreen)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Elliott Gould, Nina van Pallandt, Sterling Hayden, Mark Rydell, Henry Gibson
  • Directors: Greg Carson, Robert Altman
  • Writers: Leigh Brackett, Raymond Chandler
  • Producers: Greg Carson, Elliott Kastner, Jerry Bick, Robert Eggenweiler
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, DVD-Video, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: French
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: R
  • Studio: Fox Video (Canada) Limited
  • Release Date: April 1 2003
  • Run Time: 112 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000069HZU
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #46,580 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)

Product Description

Product Description

Elliott Gould gives one of his best performances (Esquire) as a quirky, mischievous PhilipMarlowe in Robert Altman's fascinating and original (Newsweek) send-up of Raymond Chandler's classic detective story. Co-starring Nina Van Pallandt and Sterling Hayden and written by Leigh Brackett (The Big Sleep) The Long Goodbye is a gloriously inspired tribute to Hollywood (The Hollywood Reporter) with an ending that's as controversial as it is provocative (Los Angeles Times)! Los Angeles private eye Philip Marlowe (Gould) faces the most bizarre case of his life, when a friend's apparent suicide turns into a double murder involving a sexy blonde, a disturbed gangster and a suitcase full of drug money. But as Marlowe stumbles toward the truth, hesoon finds himself lost in a maze of sex and deceitonly to discover that in L.A., if love is dangerous friendship is murder.

Raymond Chandler's cynically idealistic hero, Philip Marlowe, has been played by everyone from Humphrey Bogart to James Garner--but no one gives him the kind of weirdly affect-less spin that Elliott Gould does in this terrific Robert Altman reimagining of Chandler's penultimate novel. Altman recasts Marlowe as an early '70s L.A. habitué, who gets involved in a couple of cases at once. The most interesting involves a suicidal writer (Sterling Hayden in a larger-than-life performance) whom Marlowe is supposed to keep away from malevolent New-Ageish guru Henry Gibson. A variety of wonderfully odd characters pop up, played by everyone from model Nina Van Pallandt to director Mark Rydell to ex-baseballer Jim Bouton. And yes, that is Arnold Schwarzenegger (in only his second movie) popping up as (what else?) a muscleman. Listen for the title song: It shows up in the strangest places. --Marshall Fine --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Dog on Dec 2 2003
Format: DVD
There are so many good ideas and concepts at work in this film. Here are a few:
1: In the DVD Special Features, Director Robert Altman talks about his overall concept for this film. His problem was how does a filmaker take a character that is so much from a different era and place him in modern times? Altman came up with a conceptual framework: look at the film as though Philip Marlowe, Chandler's ace detective from the 1940's, has been sleeping for thirty years and wakes up in the 1970's. Altman called it his "Rip Van Marlowe" concept. He thought of the film this way because he wanted to place the classic 1940 Marlowe sense of integrity and ethical code in the free-wheeling Seventies. This idea is ingenious and fits Eliott Gould's hip but outsider acting style to a tee.
2: Altman keeps the camera moving at all times. The lens does not jerk around in a mise en scene way, but more with long, smooth tracking and pan shots. This gives the movie a great feeling of constant action and forward movement, even when folks are just talking. The camera movement is done in such a smooth way, it seems very natural - as if you, the viewer, were really watching the action and simply turning your head to follow the flow of life.
3: The movie theme song is beautiful and was written by Johnny Mercer. It has a classic feel, and it dominates the sound of the film. Altman has put this haunting melody everywhere; in the sound of a doorbell, in the tune played in a Mexican funeral, in songs that come over half-heard radios - everywhere. It is the song the small time lounge piano player is trying to learn in the background of one scene, and it is the song that you will find yourself humming once the film is over. All this is almost done on a subliminal level, and it is brilliant.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. Maynard Gelinas on May 16 2004
Format: DVD
Been a long time fan of McCabe & Mrs. Miller, consider it one of the great films of the '70s, and bought the disc with pleasure. So last week I rented 3 Women based on the reviews of that film here and absolutely loved it; an incredibly surreal and strange film. So I ordered it, and then decided to explore a few other '70s Altman films. Based on those reviews I decided to add The Long Goodbye with my order of 3 Women, expecting that I would enjoy both. But I couldn't wait, so I rented The Long Goodbye too and watched it last night. Suffice it to say, I didn't like it, but fortunately the order hadn't shipped so I was able to cancel The Long Goodbye in time and will just receive 3 Women from that order.
What didn't I like? Well, the scene setups are very cliche. In one scene Marlow and Ellen Wade are talking by a window. Altman separates each on both sides of the frame with the ocean behind the window in the center frame out of focus. Then there's movement in the window. The camera zooms past both Marlow and Wade to the scene past the window with both continuing their conversation and you see Wade's husband throw himself into the ocean in suicide. Great camera work, but the acting is played so deadpan by both that given the circumstances it just didn't seem believable. Gould's Marlow faces numerous situations where he plays it so deadpan it just didn't work for me, that's just one example.
And the ending, far from being a shocker, simply played out an obvious violent outcome that today wouldn't be the slightest bit outrageous. And yes, I recognize that the shocker is moral and not just a shock from violence. Maybe society today has simple degenerated over the last 30 years WRT accepting violent imagery.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By C. Ebeling on July 16 2001
Format: VHS Tape
THE LONG GOOD-BYE comes from a championship bloodline. Like the Kennedy teeth and jaw line, it has scenes in which you recognize its heritage, that being Altman. For that it gets some points, but that alone can't keep it afloat. The concept of mixing up Raymond Chandler's classic hardboiled detective character Philip Marlowe with 70's Los Angeles must have looked good on paper but in execution it is hazy. Part of the problem is that Elliott Gould's Marlowe is half 70's mentality and a whiff retro, thus killing the irony of contrast with the times. Women do not fare well in this film: they are topless hippies, brutalized mistresses or, possibly, bad guys. Drippy. When it comes down to it, the only moral touchstones in this flick--and every story needs at least one--are the cat and the dog, and they aren't in enough scenes. If you want a thriller and a more evocative retro/present look at LA, as well as a name brand of sorts, get Kenneth Brannagh's DEAD AGAIN. If what you want is more Altman, then knock yourself out with this.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 19 2002
Format: VHS Tape
I've read Raymond Chandler's "The Long Goodbye" and thoroughly enjoyed it. What makes Philip Marlowe such an appealing character is that underneath his cynical exterior is a man who is a romantic. He's a nice man caught up in a sleazy, amoral world.
Unfortunately, Robert Altman completely misses the point of Marlowe's character in this film. While I can respect wanting to take a new approach to a well-worn genre, Altman's sneering contempt for Chandler's detective ruins what could have been a truly great movie. Elliott Gould too often comes across as a goofy smart-... who seems to think he is too cool for the role he is playing.
Unlike the genre-busting "M*A*S*H" and "McCabe & Mrs. Miller", Altman completely strips the characters in this film of any humanity. There is not one character in this film that is even remotely likeable.
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