The Cheap Detective (1978)

PG   |    |  Comedy, Crime, Mystery


The Cheap Detective (1978) Poster

San Francisco, 1940, detectives, dames, documents, Nazis, and a treasure.


6.5/10
3,700

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  • Peter Falk in The Cheap Detective (1978)
  • Peter Falk in The Cheap Detective (1978)
  • Peter Falk in The Cheap Detective (1978)
  • Peter Falk and Marsha Mason in The Cheap Detective (1978)
  • Peter Falk in The Cheap Detective (1978)
  • Peter Falk and Dom DeLuise in The Cheap Detective (1978)

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Reviews & Commentary

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User Reviews


29 November 1998 | pillsner
kitchen sink humor that misses the target
'The Cheap Detective' is an example of the 'every thing but the kitchen sink' kind of spoof movie in the spirit of 'Airplane', 'The Naked Gun', and 'Hot Shots'. That is, the writer (in this case, Neil Simon) tries to spoof a genre (in this case, primarily Bogart movies) and includes every conceivable gag that can be associated with it. What you get is a movie that is good if more jokes succeed than fail and bad if more jokes fail than succeed. This movie falls in the moderately bad category. It is not a matter of jokes making you think, as another reviewer wrote, but thinking about the jokes and saying "I get it, but it's just not that funny." There are some very funny moments, but not enough for me to recommend it. This result probably could have been predicted, because Simon is better at relationship humor than spoof humor (see 'The Odd Couple' and at least 1/2 dozen others).

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Did You Know?

Trivia

"Sam Diamond" is a combination of Dashiell Hammett's character "Sam Spade" and "Richard Diamond", played by Dick Powell on radio and David Janssen on TV.


Quotes

Lou Peckinpaugh: Miss De Vega, I presume.
Mrs. Montenegro: Mr. Peckinpaugh, you look startled.
Lou Peckinpaugh: Oh, no, it's just that, uh, you look like... fourteen other dames that was here the other night.
Mrs. Montenegro: Yes, I know. They were my sister.
Lou Peckinpaugh: Well, that explains the resemblance.
Mrs. Montenegro: Not to me - she was ...


Goofs

When Lou and Marlene are talking in his apartment, her scarf keeps changing position from surrounding her face to trailing down the back of her head.


Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: In 1939, the ominous grey clouds of war broke loose over Western Europe and rained down havoc and destruction . . . followed by humidity and gradual clearing.

In the Philippines, a small band of native guerrillas prepared secretly for the inevitable conflict that would soon engulf the East . . . This has nothing to do with our story.

Our story is about crime. Not the bad crime we face each day on our streets . . . but the good crime we came to know and love in a time when the world was innocent ... when murder wasn't something you were ashamed of ... when a bullet hole wasn't something disgusting . . . and when a man could betray a woman without feeling guilty. Our story starts in a fictitious city called San Francisco ... seven thousand miles away from Casablanca.


Soundtracks

Mimi
(uncredited)
Music by
Richard Rodgers
Lyrics by Lorenz Hart
Sung by Maurice Chevalier in the watch

Storyline

Plot Summary


Genres

Comedy | Crime | Mystery | Romance | Thriller

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