Re: RARA-AVIS: Trouble Is My Business & Total Chaos

From: Kevin Burton Smith (
Date: 22 Jun 2007

On Jun 19, 2007, at 9:13 PM, Vince Keenan wrote:

> It was announced a while back that Clive Owen would produce and
> star as Philip Marlowe in a new series of Raymond Chandler
> adaptations. The first project has been announced. It will be
> based on the novella TROUBLE IS MY BUSINESS. Perhaps more
> interesting is the choice of writer: Frank Miller, who worked with
> Owen on SIN CITY. Let the arguments commence.


Owen as Marlowe? Sure. He might be very effective, with the ability to be both hard and soft. Certainly a better choice than Montgomery or Garner. Or Boothe Powers (the poor man's Stacy Keach. Or is it the other way around?)

And of course, Miller may have hidden depths. But him doing Chandler?

Yuck. My first reaction is... Miller's a pretentious hack. Oooh! Black ink! How artistic!

SIN CITY? Technically and visually, it was stunning. But the writing was simply for the stunned. A bloated, smug, overwrought, humourless and soulless film, based on equally bloated, smug, overwrought, humourless and soulless comic books; PULP FICTION (and pulp fiction) stripped of any cleverness and dumbed down (way, way down) for fourteen year males of all ages and genders.

Adapting Chandler requires a grace and deftness and subtlety I've never really seen in any of Miller's work. Miller's generally about as subtle as an amputated leg.

If Miller wants to adapt a classic detective author, he should go for someone like Spillane, and leave Chandler for someone better qualified.

You purists think Altman took liberties? Wait'll Marlowe pulls out a bazooka or starts boinking hookers.

Of course, as I said, I could be wrong.


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