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Dashiell Hammett: Detective/Writer
Dashiell Hammett Detective/Writer
Actors: David Strathairn, Kathleen Turner
Director: Joshua Waletzky
Genres: Educational, Documentary, Mystery & Suspense
NR     1999     0hr 56min

A self-taught writer who had worked as a Pinkerton detective, Dashiell Hammett pioneered the hardboiled detective novel and rose to great fame before success seemed to make his life unravel. This documentary, an episode of...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: David Strathairn, Kathleen Turner
Director: Joshua Waletzky
Creators: Kramer Morgenthau, Lori Cheatle, Margaret Smilow
Genres: Educational, Documentary, Mystery & Suspense
Sub-Genres: Educational, Biography, Mystery & Suspense
Studio: Fox Lorber
Format: DVD - Black and White,Color
DVD Release Date: 10/19/1999
Original Release Date: 10/19/1999
Theatrical Release Date: 10/19/1999
Release Year: 1999
Run Time: 0hr 56min
Screens: Black and White,Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Fascinating author of the hard-boiled mystery
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This film is an interesting look at Dashiell Hammett, the master of the hard-boiled detective novel, who wrote lovely prose and then drank his ill-health to the breaking point. He was a Pinkerton detective, a TB patient, a friend of William Faulkner, and an intimate friend of Lillian Hellman. Hammett joined the Armed Forces during WWII, became a card-carrying Communist, and was imprisoned during McCarthy's red scare. The film is well-done and incorporates lots of photographs and clips from the films he authored, as well as lines from his novels and stories. If you've read Hammett, you'll want to read more, and if you haven't, this film will prompt you to delve into some of his works. It's definitely worth seeing, because the story of Hammett himself is as fascinating as the stories he wrote."
Accurate and entertaining overview of mystery writer's life
Vince Emery | San Francisco, CA USA | 06/08/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Well-researched documentary, with Oscar nominee David Strathairn as the voice of Hammett, and interviews with Hammett's daughter Jo, other people who knew him (Jack Bjoze, Emmy Kronenberger, Ring Lardner, Jr., Bill Glackin, Victor Rabinowitz, Muriel Alexander), and Hammett researchers David Fechheimer, Richard Layman, Diane Johnson, and Joan Mellen. Includes rare photos & movie footage of Hammett. Most items about Hammett play loose with the facts. This one is accurate and entertaining as well."