The Big Sleep (1946 film)

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Humphrey Bogart in The Big Sleep trailer.jpg
Lauren Bacall in The Big Sleep trailer.jpg

The Big Sleep is a 1946 film about private detective Philip Marlowe who is hired by a rich family. Before the complex case is over, he's seen murder, blackmail, and what might be love. In 1997, the U.S. Library of Congress deemed the film "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant," and added it to the National Film Registry.

Directed by Howard Hawks. Written by William Faulkner, Leigh Brackett, and Jules Furthman, based on the novel by Raymond Chandler.
The type of man she hated ...was the type she wanted! taglines

Dialogue[edit]

Carmen: You're not very tall, are you?
Marlowe: Well, I, uh, I try to be.
Carmen: Not bad looking. Oh you probably know it.
Marlowe: Thank you.
Carmen: What's your name?
Marlowe: Reilly. Doghouse Reilly.
Carmen: That's a funny kind of name.
Marlowe: You think so.
Carmen: Uh huh. What are you? A prizefighter?
Marlowe: No, I'm a shamus.
Carmen: What's a shamus?
Marlowe: It's a private detective.
Carmen: You're making fun of me.
Marlowe: Uh, huh.
Carmen: [she leans back and falls into his arms] You're cute.
Marlowe: [to the butler, Norris] You ought to wean her, she's old enough.

Sternwood: How do you like your brandy, sir?
Marlowe: In a glass.

Sternwood: You are looking, sir, at a very dull survival of a very gaudy life - crippled, paralyzed in both legs, very little I can eat, and my sleep is so near waking that it's hardly worth the name. I seem to exist largely on heat, like a newborn spider. The orchids are an excuse for the heat. Do you like orchids?
Marlowe: Not particularly.
Sternwood: Nasty things! Their flesh is too much like the flesh of men, and their perfume has the rotten sweetness of corruption.

Sternwood: [about talking to Carmen about her "debts" (actually blackmail)] If I did, she'd just suck her thumb and look coy.
Marlowe: I met her in the hall and she did that to me. Then she tried to sit in my lap while I was standing up.

Vivian: So you're a private detective. I didn't know they existed, except in books. Or else they were greasy little men snooping around hotel corridors. My, you're a mess, aren't you?
Marlowe: I'm not very tall either. Next time, I'll come on stilts, wear a white tie and carry a tennis racket.
Vivian: I doubt if even that would help. Now this business of Dad's. You think you can handle it for him?
Marlowe: It shouldn't be too tough.
Vivian: Really? I would have thought a case like that took a little effort.
Marlowe: Not too much.
Vivian: What will your first step be?
Marlowe: The usual one.
Vivian: I didn't know there was a usual one.
Marlowe: Oh sure there is. It comes complete with diagrams on page forty-seven of 'How to Be a Detective in Ten Easy Lessons' correspondence school textbook.

Vivian: You know, I don't see what there is to be cagey about, Mr. Marlowe. And I don't like your manners.
Marlowe: I'm not crazy about yours. I didn't ask to see you. I don't mind if you don't like my manners. I don't like them myself. They're pretty bad. I grieve over them long winter evenings. And I don't mind your ritzing me, or drinking your lunch out of a bottle, but don't waste your time trying to cross-examine me.
Vivian: People don't talk to me like that.
Marlowe: Ohhh.
Vivian: Do you always think you can handle people like, uh, trained seals?
Marlowe: Uh, huh. I usually get away with it, too.
Vivian: How nice for you.

Vivian: You go too far, Marlowe.
Marlowe: Those are harsh words to throw at a man, especially when he's walking out of your bedroom.

Marlowe: You wanna tell me now?
Vivian: Tell you what?
Marlowe: What it is you're trying to find out. You know, it's a funny thing. You're trying to find out what your father hired me to find out, and I'm trying to find out why you want to find out.
Vivian: You could go on forever, couldn't you? Anyway it'll give us something to talk about next time we meet.
Marlowe: Among other things.

Marlowe: My, my, my! Such a lot of guns around town and so few brains. You know, you're the second guy I've met today that seems to think a gat in the hand means the world with the tail. Ha, ha, ha. Put it down, Joe. The other guy's name was Eddie Mars. You ever hear of him?
Brody: Nope.
Marlowe: If he ever gets wise to where you were last night in the rain, you'll hear of him.

Carmen: Can I have my picture now?
Marlowe: No.
Carmen: Can I have my gun back?
Marlowe: Later.
Carmen: You're cute. I like you.
Marlowe: What you see's nothing. I've got a Balinese dancing girl tattooed across my chest.

Agnes: That's what I always draw. Never once a man who's smart all the way around the course. Never once.
Marlowe: Did I hurt you much, sugar?
Agnes: You and every other man I've ever met.

Vivian: Tell me: What do you usually do when you're not working?
Marlowe: Oh, play the horses, fool around.
Vivian: No women?
Marlowe: I'm generally working on something most of the time.
Vivian: Could that be stretched to include me?
Marlowe: Well I like you. I've told you that before.
Vivian: I like hearing you say it. But you didn't do much about it.
Marlowe: Well, neither did you.
Vivian: Well, speaking of horses, I like to play them myself. But I like to see them work out a little first, see if they're front-runners or come from behind, find out what their hole-card is. What makes them run.
Marlowe: Find out mine?
Vivian: I think so.
Marlowe: Go ahead.
Vivian: I'd say you don't like to be rated. You like to get out in front, open up a lead, take a little breather in the backstretch, and then come home free.
Marlowe: You don't like to be rated yourself.
Vivian: I haven't met anyone yet that can do it. Any suggestions?
Marlowe: Well, I can't tell till I've seen you over a distance of ground. You've got a touch of class, but, uh...I don't know how - how far you can go.
Vivian: A lot depends on who's in the saddle. Go ahead Marlowe, I like the way you work. In case you don't know it, you're doing all right.
Marlowe: There's one thing I can't figure out.
Vivian: What makes me run?
Marlowe: Uh-huh.
Vivian: I'll give you a little hint. Sugar won't work. It's been tried.

Marlowe: Let's begin with what Eddie Mars has on you.
Vivian: If he had anything, would it be any of your business? You've already been paid, haven't you?
Marlowe: Yeah, by you.
Vivian: Are you after more money?
Marlowe: Well, I guess you've got a right to ask that. No, I'm not after more money. I've already been well paid. I've got another reason.
Vivian: You like my father, don't you?
Marlowe: Mmm, hmm.
Vivian: Then why don't you stop?
Marlowe: Remember I told you I was beginning to like another one of the Sternwoods?
Vivian: I wish you'd show it.
Marlowe: That should be awful easy. [He kisses her]
Vivian: I liked that. I'd like more. [They kiss a second time] That's even better.
Marlowe: All right, now that's settled. What's Eddie Mars got on you?
Vivian: So that's the way...
Marlowe: That's the way it is. Kissing is all right. It's nice. I'd like to do more of it. But first, I want to find out what Eddie Mars has on you.

Carmen: What does the hat-check girl get for a tip?
Marlowe: I'm trying to think of something appropriate. How did you get in here?
Carmen: Bet you can't guess.
Marlowe: Oh, but I can. You came in through the keyhole like Peter Pan.
Carmen: Who's he?
Marlowe: Hmm. A guy I used to know around a pool room.
Carmen: You're cute.
Marlowe: I'm getting cuter every minute.

Vivian: You've forgotten one thing. Me.
Marlowe: [pulling her to him] What's wrong with you?
Vivian: Nothing you can't fix.

Taglines[edit]

  • The type of man she hated . . . was the type she wanted !
  • The picture they were born for!

Cast[edit]

External links[edit]

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