Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: Marlowe

From: Mario Taboada (
Date: 02 Jul 2003

When Altman's film came out, I was disappointed. I didn't realize then, as I did later, that Marlowe is an archetype, not a character. Altman was trying to capture two archetypes: the tough but noble PI and the realistic PI novel (what we call hardboiled). He did it by placing the TBNPI in a surreal background. I now consider his experiment successful.

If you watch, say, Hawk's _The Big Sleep_ after Altman's film, the older film will seem literal and naive. Proof that Altman nailed the essence of the archetype.

The Polanski-Keitel film I have in mind would try to get even closer to that essence. It would not be necessary to change the period. That's just props, like Marlowe's wisecracking and Chandler's similes.



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