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5.0 out of 5 stars Much better than the Bogart movie.
Yes, that's right. It may be politically incorrect to say that anything Bogart did could be improved upon, but this movie is not only better, it is excellent in its own right.
If you like hard boiled detectives and film noir, this one is highly recommended.
I think I would have enjoyed it more if it had been set in Los Angeles in the '40's as the book was,...
Published on Feb. 12 1999

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2.0 out of 5 stars Out of the Shadows
Everyone knows that Bogart was a genius and will forever remain a star. His roles will endure all the tests of time. Put him together with Bacall and you have screen magic that can never be equaled, let alone surpassed... The 1946 version is regarded as a classic, and deservedly so. Now imagine what a insurmountable task it would be to emmerge from the shadow of such a...
Published on Aug. 19 2000 by Kristopher Haines


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1.0 out of 5 stars Truly A Disappointment, Dec 12 2003
This review is from: The Big Sleep (Full Screen) (DVD)
While I can add little to the excellent review - "Appalling" - I can add my voice to say how disappointing every bit of this movie was. I am a fan of film noire, a fan of Robert Mitchum and a great fan of the original Humphrey Bogart/Lauren Bacall classic so I thought to myself, "This is bound to be a winner!" Boy, was I wrong! What a stinker.
Particularly disturbing was the dull, listless performance of Robert Mitchum. He was just going through the motions. This is particularly shocking in view of the fact that he had just done Phillip Marlowe in the remake of "Farewell, My Lovely" in 1975 and had delivered a classic performance of the dark, brooding over-the-hill Marlowe.
To make matters worse, the rest of the cast didn't help at all. With the possible exception of Richard Boone's energetic portrayal of Canino, it was pretty obvious nobody else really gave a damn either.
If you're a Mitchum fan, save your money. If your a film noire fan, save your money. If your money is burning a hole in your pocket - buy it - you'll only get what you deserve.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Appalling, Feb. 20 2003
By 
Howie "tomas" (United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Big Sleep (Full Screen) (DVD)
Boy, how to begin to describe the shortfalls of this turkey? My movie book gave it a BOMB, but sometimes bombs can be fun to watch, so I wached this anyway.
What a waste of time.
First off, Mr. Mitchum virtually sleepwalks through his role. There is no spark, no flair. Just mumbling. Almost every other cast member turns in substandard performances, except Jimmy Stewart, whose fine job can't raise the efforts of his colleagues.
Candy Clark plays the psychopathic sister in such an over-the-top manner that her character is no longer disturbing, but comical. And not threatening, as it should be.
The directing is very trite, the lighting mostly high-key (lots of light filling every corner), and the audio editing is an abortion. Listen to this with headphones on and you'll hear the dialog jump back and forth between live action audio from the set to post-production audio from the studio - sometimes in the middle of a sentence!
The only redeeming thing about this film is that Candy Clark spends about half her screen time butt naked. But, that's it.
Forget this one, friends. It's a loser from every angle. You're throwing away your money. If you *must* see it, take it out of the library, like I did. Then you can rest easy at night, knowing you didn't throw your money away....
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4.0 out of 5 stars MITCHUM VERSUS BOONE MAKES "BIG SLEEP" WORTH WATCHING., June 10 2002
By 
Anthony Caton (Arkansas. USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Big Sleep (VHS Tape)
Okay, Mitchum isn't Humphrey Bogart but the 1979 "Big Sleep" is a great way to kill 90-minutes. This version of "Sleep" begins with Marlowe (Mitchum) visiting Gen. Sternwood (a pallid Jimmy Stewart) at his palatial estate in England. Sternwood wants Marlowe to help him resolve a blackmail sceme involving one of his daughters. This is easily the most sleazy film Stewart ever appeared in; however Mitchum, Sarah Miles, Joan Collins and Oliver Reed seem right at home here. Richard Boone clearly has a hell of a time playing Mitchum's toughest adversary since Robert Ryan in "The Racket." For Michael Winner's best directorial effort take a look at "Lawman," with Burt Lancaster, Ryan and Lee J. Cobb.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good attempt at remaking a classic..., April 23 2002
By 
Mark Savary "moon_city" (Seattle, WA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Big Sleep (Full Screen) (DVD)
"The Big Sleep" is now and forever shall be Humphrey Bogart's movie. There's just no way around that.
Mitchum's great, as usual, but the British setting made me think of the Duke movie, "Brannigan". If you like "Brannigan" (I admit, I do), you'll like this version of "The Big Sleep". I suppose the producers had to make the location different to set it aprt from the 1946 film (also, British moneyman Lord Lew Grade financed the film; the Brits seem to have a quirky appreciation for our cowboys and private eye heroes).
However, this 1978 effort is worth a viewing for Marlowe fans. Mitchum captures the detective's character very well. Oliver Reed is a very menacing Eddie Mars, and just listening to his lines delivered in Reed's Shakesperian whispered hiss makes Reed the picture of the smooth and scary gangster.
Jimmy Stewart is in his golden years here, a big star just doing his thing. We only see him in two scenes, and they're fair. This was about the time he was guest-starring in features like "The Magic of Lassie", "Airport '77", and other big, overblown, movies packed with familiar faces and stars of yesteryear. Joan Collins also looks to have been added only for name value here.
Candy Clark is sexy and nubile enough (and nude often enough), as the troubled younger daughter Camilla, but although she plays the part well, she comes off as a little more spacey than incorrigable in this 70's Marlowe. Sarah Miles isn't really interesting or even all that sexy as the older sister Charlotte. She wasn't very convincing, and probably the weakest cast member. This is unfortunate, because Charlotte is an important character who is supposed to move the plot along.
As for the film itself, I think overall it was pretty good, but the modern setting (and being set in Britain), work against the Marlowe mystique. If you can get past those elements, and perhaps have not seen the classic Bogart film, this version will probably be more entertaining. I liked the opening and closing sequences, and the effort put forward throughout the film to bring Marlowe back and into then-modern times.
One thing that did not make sense was the proliferation of firearms in modern day Britain, which is just not as believable as a film set in 1940's America. Also, the scandal involving the nude photos, drug use, and the sexual antics of the younger daughter doesn't hold up well here.
The movie tries very hard, and is engaging enough for the casual viewer. There are even a few plot twists that diviate from the original film. If you are a big Marlowe fan, you may not be too pleased with the 70's re-make qualities on display, "50 pounds a day plus expenses", and other Britishisms/moderisms. On the other hand, if you want a good Mitchum detective movie, this one will fit the bill.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Out of the Shadows, Aug. 19 2000
By 
Kristopher Haines (Portland, OR United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Big Sleep (VHS Tape)
Everyone knows that Bogart was a genius and will forever remain a star. His roles will endure all the tests of time. Put him together with Bacall and you have screen magic that can never be equaled, let alone surpassed... The 1946 version is regarded as a classic, and deservedly so. Now imagine what a insurmountable task it would be to emmerge from the shadow of such a film... This movie valiently attempts to do just that, but sadly for the most part it fails. Anticipating the inevitable comparison between this version and it's predesessor, the director chose to move the setting from Los Angeles California to London, England. The directors intention for the move is not to distance himself from the previous production so that this film may find it's own voice and be remembered in it's own right. No,I think the director had some vain hope that if he got far enough away from the original and successfully avoided camparison, that the viewer would not notice how little justice it does to Chandler's novel. This hopeless and nakedly self serving production choice insults the audience's intelligence... To the film's credit it does stay true to Chandler's characters. And it's "updating" does not interfere with the overall plot of the story. (Aside from the grating British accents) This was not the case with 1969's "Marlowe" (the film version of Chandler's 'The Little Sister') In "Marlowe" the "updating" consisted of taking each one of the settings that Chandler had so vividly described in his novel and making them hippie like. All of this set to a jazz score that would make Shaft cringe. As if that wasn't enough the mobster that trashed Marlowe's office was transformed into a kickboxer To top that off the title role was given to James Garner who's performance one could not avoid comparing to his most famous character Rockford. The title role this time was well cast. Robert Mitchum plays an above adverage Marlowe, I am eager to see his first portrayl in "Farewell My Lovely" Mitchum earned this movie it's first star solely on his merits. I gave the second because despite the misconcieved move accross the Atlantic, this movie was bold. One has to consider that not only did this movie have to tell a complicated story but it also had to overcome the barriers of it's two classics that came before it, and emmerge from their shadows.....
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5.0 out of 5 stars Much better than the Bogart movie., Feb. 12 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Big Sleep (VHS Tape)
Yes, that's right. It may be politically incorrect to say that anything Bogart did could be improved upon, but this movie is not only better, it is excellent in its own right.
If you like hard boiled detectives and film noir, this one is highly recommended.
I think I would have enjoyed it more if it had been set in Los Angeles in the '40's as the book was, but this movie is so good, it doesn't matter.
Robert Mitchum was my favorite Marlowe.
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The Big Sleep (Full Screen)
The Big Sleep (Full Screen) by Michael Winner (DVD - 2002)
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