Nostalgic send-up of Bogart detective films of the '40s boasts a spot-on impression of the famous star by Robert Sacchi, who made a career doing mostly the same. (That's him in the Robert Zemeckis-helmed "You, Murderer" ep... more »isode from Tales from the Crypt). The premise is that Sacchi plays a retired cop who gets plastic surgery to make himself look like Bogart, and then sets up shop as a private dick named Sam Marlow. But the plot is really just an excuse to pay tribute to Bogart's detective films. Sacchi's channeling of Bogie is so uncanny you'll be positively mesmerized for about 30 minutes. And that's the problem. While this amiable pastiche might help while away the evening in nostalgic reverie, it does a major disservice to the films it appears to idolize. That's the problem with nostalgia: it usually jettisons all the depth and complexity of the original, leaving an indistinct fifth-generation clone, a fuzzy Xerox of a Xerox of a Xerox. So when the novelty of the flick begins to wane, there's only the plot to fall back on for interest. And the plot is only there to have something upon which to hang references to Bogart flicks. The story largely mirrors The Maltese Falcon, with the great whatsit, the things dreams are made of, being a pair of sapphires known as the "eyes of Alexander." The cast is composed of simulacra of past film greats: Gene Tierney (Michelle Phillips), Sidney Greenstreet (Victor Buono), and Peter Lorre (Herbert Lom)--not so successful, that last one. --Jim Gay« less
This is bogart BUT the plot is silly and at times perverted
Something Special INC | caldwell, NJ United States | 02/15/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"5 stars to the actor playing bogie,he has the voice,look, manors and style PERFECT. however the golden age of movies did not have curse words & naked women and i really doubt the real bogie would have lowered himself to this stupid script. If you are the ultimate bogart fan,like me, you can apprechiate just how good this actor plays him and at times there are a few funny sceenes like a car crash resulting from seeing bogie back from the dead.nice hearing the this actor relate everything to the "old days" as he visits certain streets and area's in this film where previous old movies were shot naming the stars who were in them, you can kind of picture it in B&W in your head if you saw the films. it is also kind of neat seeing a cameo by george raft an actor who played with bogie way back when in some of the classics but this is NOT a child safe movie. You can take most of the golden age movies and watch them with a family but not this trashy comedy too many uneeded sex implied scenario's that just dont fit with the real humphrey bogart films."
Sam Marlow in "The Eyes of Alexander"
Annie Van Auken | Planet Earth | 06/15/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"All Bogie fans, in fact ALL lovers of classics should see THE MAN WITH BOGART'S FACE. It stars Robert Sacchi, who is an uncanny double for Mr. B. in size, face, hair, mannerisms and voice. Watching him in this movie is like seeing Bogie alive again.
The story opens at a plastic surgeon's office. The gauze wrappings are removed from our hero's face; he sits in front of a TV that's showing the last scene of THE MALTESE FALCON. As the surgically-created Bogart examines his visage in the mirror with a characteristic twitch, we hear Bogie's famous "you're going over/because you're partners" soliloquy coming from the nearby television.
"Bogart's Face" is packed with references to classic cinema, both spoken and visually. The climactic house of mirrors shootout in Orson Welles' THE LADY FROM SHANGHAI is reenacted at Hollywood's famous Wax Museum. Sacchi's character, hard-boiled detective Sam Marlow, talks incessantly about old films. He'll do something, like throw a sword into the ceiling, and then remark: "Tyrone Power did that in THE MARK OF ZORRO.
Michelle Phillips is the woman private eye Marlow is obsessed with. He thinks of her as Gene Tierney in LAURA, in fact, he even calls her Laura one time by mistake. Marlow drives an early 40s sedan and lives in a trench coat (naturally).
Actors in the film represent those from Bogart classics, such as Victor Buono playing Sidney Greenstreet and Herbert Lom as Peter Lorre. Additionally there are old-time stars sprinkled throughout in cameos: George Raft, Yvonne DeCarlo, Mike Mazurki and Henry Wilcoxon.
In one scene, Sacchi is a stunning Bogie in his sparkling white dinner jacket. Experiencing this film is like seeing the Bogart movie that never was. I highly recommend it!
For another modern take on Humphrey Bogart, check out Woody Allen's PLAY IT AGAIN, SAM-- the 1972 adaptation of Allen's Broadway show. In this one, the Bogart impressionist is Jerry Lacy."
Enjoyable and lightweight...
Leslie Karen Rigsbey | WOOD RIVER, IL USA | 06/01/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Andy Fenaday's scipt follows self-employed detective (Scacchi, who's incredible) as he gets wrapped up in a MALTESE FALCON-type mystery. Heavy doses of amusing dialog, crammed with old movie references, this movie is better than FLETCH. A lot of fun and worth repeated viewings. A must for movie buffs. Good family viewing, with older kids. Rated PG for profanity, violence, and mild sexual innuendo."
The man with bogart's face
John H Davis | College Park, Maryland | 05/30/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"For me, this was a thoroughly enjoyable movie. If you're a Bogart fan and enjoy playing name that tune, you'll see references throughout this one. Set in Los Angeles, it starts out with this Bogie look alike driving through the suburban streets in a trench coat and hat, as though in much colder San Francisco. It has exactly the humor that appeals to me and should appeal to many other viewers. Border line politically incorrect at places, it should be viewed not with the expectation that it will be a thriller like one of the Sam Spade series, but with the realization that it is meant to be a lighthearted tribute to Humphry Bogart. I believe that Lauren Bacall would approve heartily."
A sweet bit of noir
Randall Ivey | USA | 05/11/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Robert Sacchi attained minor celebrity in the 70's and 80's for his uncanny resemblance to Bogie and parlayed it into a career in TV commercials and cameo movie roles, most notably in Woody Allen's PLAY IT AGAIN, SAM. This vehicle is built around his unique "gift." It's an unremarkable but highly likable send-up of the great private eye flicks from the 30's and 40's - its most obvious inspiration being THE MALTESE FALCON, but there are allusions to THE LADY FROM SHANGHAI and other classics as well.It is chock full of hard-boiled banter and shadowy frames and shadowy characters and probably would have been better shot in black and white to capture the true ambience and ambiguities of the originals it seeks to imitate.Same Marlowe is hired to find "the eyes of Alexander", sapphire replicas of Alexander the Great's eyes used in a bust of the conqueror, and during the search he runs into a snag of competing interests, all played by well-known character actors, Victor Buono and Herbert Lom among them. The plot, however, is superfluous, as it almost always is in detective films. The real point of the movie is to pay tribute to old time movie magic, and part of its fun is in the cameos. Apart from bit parts by the likes of George Raft, watch out for appearances by famed Hollywood reporters James Bacon and Robert Osborne as well (the latter now the host of cable's Turner Classic Movies)."