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4.6 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: New York: Popular Library # 04353 1st Printing Undated (circa 1980); . edition (1980)
  • ASIN: B0027J2FBY
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #14,947,580 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
THE BLUE DAHLIA offers a rare early glimpse into the sausage-making machinery of 1940s Hollywood.

First and foremost, it's a cracking good read. A Chandler original, it's the only one of the scripts that wasn't adapted from another source or that he never adapted into prose (unlike PLAYBACK, which also exists as a novel) -- so this is the only place you can read this story, rather than watch it. If for no other reason, it's fascinating to read to see how the legendary writer's brusque, bruised prose style translates into screenplay form.

A compelling whodunnit, virtually free of the usual private eye tropes, its central character is a returning World War II vet who's accused of a murder he didn't commit. A complex slippery slide of betrayal draws him into the seedy underbelly of 1940s Los Angeles as he tries to exact justice and clear his name. We might turn to Chandler for a sense of nostalgia of times gone by -- but his stuff always cuts back with moments that feel bracingly modern. The script has beats that are surprisingly dark, gruesomely violent. He keeps trying to sneak in moments of a rawer reality than 1940s Hollywood would normally allow.

The script itself is a strange read. The editor has chosen to present a late draft, warts and all. It's laced with apparently incomplete script revisions -- the infamous green, pink, goldenrod, etc. pages that turn production scripts into rainbow colored messes. Thus, characters' names change, chunks of dialogue -- and sometimes whole scenes -- repeat; and the clumsy jointures of late scenes are a bit too obvious.
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Format: Paperback
THE BLUE DAHLIA offers a rare early glimpse into the sausage-making machinery of 1940s Hollywood.

First and foremost, it's a cracking good read. A Chandler original, it's the only one of his original scripts that he never adapted into prose (unlike PLAYBACK, which also exists as a novel) -- so this is the only place you can read this story, rather than watch it. And, other than PLAYBACK, it's the only Chandler script that wasn't based on someone else's material. If for no other reason, it's fascinating to read to see how the legendary writer's brusque, bruised prose style translates into screenplay form.

A compelling whodunnit, virtually free of the usual private eye tropes, its central character is a returning World War II vet who's accused of a murder he didn't commit. A complex slippery slide of betrayal draws him into the seedy underbelly of 1940s Los Angeles as he tries to exact justice and clear his name. We might turn to Chandler for a sense of nostalgia of times gone by -- but his stuff always cuts back with moments that feel bracingly modern. The script has beats that are surprisingly dark, gruesomely violent. He keeps trying to sneak in moments of a rawer reality than 1940s Hollywood would normally allow.

The script itself is a strange read. The editor has chosen to present a late draft, warts and all. It's laced with apparently incomplete script revisions -- the infamous green, pink, goldenrod, etc. pages that turn production scripts into rainbow colored messes. Thus, characters' names change, chunks of dialogue -- and sometimes whole scenes -- repeat; and the clumsy jointures of late scenes are a bit too obvious.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a huge Raymond Chandler fan and bought this screenplay even though I'd seen the movie. I especially enjoyed the forward which gave an insider's glimpse into the movie business at that time as well as the lengths Chandler went to in order to write the script. Incredible.

It also explained how Chandler had to alter his version of the ending to accommodate the War Department's wishes, but I personally think his idea was much better and would have made a better film. Still it is an excellent piece of fiction and holds up well even today.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm a confirmed Raymond Chandler devotee and collectpr of his unique writing; and the Blue Dahlia script was final item of Chandler's work
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great book,very happy to have it. Good seller- no problems.
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