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Harper
Harper
Actors: Paul Newman, Lauren Bacall, Janet Leigh
Director: Jack Smight
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
NR     2006     2hr 1min

: Im Auftrag der reichen Mrs. Sampson sucht Privatdetektiv Harper ihren spurlos verschwundenen Ehemann. Scheinbar wurde der Millionär entführt ?" und Harper trifft gleich auf mehrere Verdächtige, denen er allesamt mehr...  more »

     
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Movie Details

Actors: Paul Newman, Lauren Bacall, Janet Leigh
Director: Jack Smight
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Classics, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Warner Home Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 11/14/2006
Original Release Date: 02/23/1966
Theatrical Release Date: 02/23/1966
Release Year: 2006
Run Time: 2hr 1min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French

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Member Movie Reviews

Peter Q. (Petequig)
Reviewed on 2/11/2010...
Great take off on the hard-boiled detective. Of course, Newman is always good.

Movie Reviews

The school of cool...
LGwriter | Astoria, N.Y. United States | 10/07/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Based on Ross McDonald's The Moving Target--one in a long series of crime novels featuring southern California PI Lew Archer--1966's Harper is a perfect complement to Point Blank, released the next year, in which Lee Marvin is tough first, cool second. Paul Newman as Harper is cool first, tough second. Neat trick.

While this is admittedly a little dated, it does bring back the 60s and in fact does a good job of it, too--even to the point of including a hippie pseudo-guru who's a front for smuggling in Mexicans from across the border, but who's got all the trademark paraphernalia--isolated wacky domicile, pet peregrine falcon with a fancy hood over its eyes, and, you know, flowing robes. Strother Martin does this role proud. It also has a "groovy chick" played by Pamela Tiffin who is, uh, a groovy chick--great bod, sexy face, and about as shallow as a frog pond in a drought.

All the middle aged women are great, really great: Julie Harris, Shelley Winters, Janet Leigh, and the great Lauren Bacall. Each one of the ladies is perfectly cast and does a terrific job, especially Shelly Winters as a liquored up former starlet who's now washed up and who sleeps it off, a lot.

Most of the cast is just plain fun to watch and it's also fun to see Newman as Harper put on various accents and personas to weasel and wheedle and wrangle information out of various folks. Harper gets beat up, but recovers fairly quickly (hey, he's the good guy; he has to), and this is OK because it's pretty easy to tell the film itself loves film noir but is subtly funning it at the same time it honors it. Sixties southern California noir--a great mix that Ross McDonald nailed in his novels and director Jack Smight follows pretty closely in the film.

It's about Harper trying to find the missing husband of wealthy wife Elaine Sampson (Bacall) and tracking the trail(s) that various people leave (or that Harper himself sniffs out) to do so. This is a standard noir/PI plot, but it's handled well here and, as noted, is really entertaining, mostly due to the terrific cast.

It would be nice if this was issued on DVD. Since there is no DVD of it, I managed to find a VCD (video compact disk) of it on another website. Worth owning, for sure.

Nice job."
Paul Newman vs. the Shallow and the Profane
Robert S. Clay Jr. | St. Louis, MO., USA | 01/21/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Paul Newman plays the title role of the world-weary detective in an updated (1966) version of a 1940's detective story. This is much more, however, than Newman trying to fill in for Humphrey Bogart. The movie intrigues the viewer from the start. Harper's personal life is a shambles, and his wife wants a divorce. Harper's professional life isn't any better, and money making cases are rare. At one point early in the film, Harper explains why he keeps at it and doesn't give up. He recalls a time when there was a peak of short duration when everything went very well, and that made all the valleys suffered seem worth the struggle. Amidst all this brooding and angst, a job materializes via a lawyer friend. Harper rouses himself, finds a tie and one last clean shirt, and drives out of the city to a private estate of the very rich. And thus begins a bewildering tale of kidnapping, betrayal, murder, and complicated characters. Newman does well as the cynical private detective with a sarcastic sense of humor. The supporting cast is a gold mine of familiar faces: Lauren Bacall, Robert Wagner, Julie Harris, Arthur Hill, etc. Nobody is what they seem. Some are evil while others are merely foolish. Either way, the people he encounters do nothing to change Harper's low opinion of the tapestry of life and its various characters. This movie will please viewers who enjoy hard as nails mystery stories that stress gritty reality rather than fiery explosions, frantic car chases, and mow-'em-down with automatic weapons shootings. Paul Newman fans will be pleased by their favorite actor in one of his best roles. Multiple viewings of the movie will increase the appreciation of plot twists and evolving characters. Definitely recommended."
Paul Newman doing what he did best
Cowboy Buddha | Essex UK | 05/29/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"The music, the cars, and the size of Pamela Tiffin's bikini (not to mention her hair) are the big giveaways that this is a Sixties Flick - but one without the usual camera trickery so fashionable in those days. Instead, director Jack Smight goes for a straightforward private eye approach, although the colour and California sunshine rule out any chance of Harper becoming a latter day film noir.Paul Newman is the title character, a seedy and cynical private eye investigating the disappearance of a singularly unloved millionaire. That Harper is seedy is amply illustrated under the opening credits. His cynicism is repeatedly demonstrated in William Goldman's terse and cutting dialogue, which Newman clearly enjoys delivering.The plot frequently takes a back seat to the parade of offbeat characters portrayed by a cast of equally offbeat co-stars. Their performances range from very good (Lauren Bacall, Arthur Hill) to barely adequate (Robert Wagner, the aforementioned Ms Tiffin) with one (Janet Leigh) seeming to have wandered in from another film altogether.But the film belongs to Newman, clearly in his prime and in the midst of a remarkable run of films with titles beginning with "H" (Hud, Hombre, The Hustler). If some elements of the film have dated, his performance has not. A terrific film for anyone who enjoys Newman, private eyes, or just good solid movie-making."