Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid
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As the private eyes of private eyes, Steve Martin is Rigby Reardon. He's tough, rough and ready to take on anything when Juliet Forrest (Rachel Ward) appears on the scene with a case: her father, a noted scientist, philanthropist and cheesemaker, had died mysteriously. Reardon immediately smells a rat and follows a complex maze of clues that lead him to the "Carlotta Lists." With a little help from his "friends", Alan Ladd, Barbara Stanwyck, Ray Milland, Burt Lancaster, Humphrey Bogart, Charles Laughton, etc., Reardon gets his man. An exciting, action-fun packed film the way '40s films used to be!
This is one of the best parodies of the '40s hardboiled detective genre, with a very clever conceit: weaving the plot and production design around memorable movie clips (The Killers, The Big Sleep, Double Indemnity, The Lost Weekend, White Heat, This Gun for Hire, Sorry, Wrong Number, Notorious). Steve Martin plays the cool Rigby Reardon, who tries solving an incomprehensible mystery with the assistance of Humphrey Bogart, James Cagney, Burt Lancaster, Fred MacMurray, Ingrid Bergman, and Ray Milland, among others. It's all silly hokum with Rachel Ward as the pretty moll and director-cowriter Carl Reiner as the nefarious villain. Miklos Rozsa takes us back to yesteryear with his lush score, and, fittingly, Edith Head handles the period costumes in her final production. --Bill Desowitz
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Top customer reviews
Sit back and have a few laughs as you watch it, but whatever you do, don't call out for your CLEANING WOMAN!
As one who remembers these great stars and great films, and one who appreciates films with clever dialog and intriguing and especially funny plots: I give it a resounding Five Stars. It’s one of my all-time favorites.