The Thin Man

Much can be lost in the transition between book and film, but as The Thin Man illustrates much can also be gained. The movie was based on a novel by one of the father's of noir, Dashiell Hammett. However, the film starring William Powell and Myrna Loy is a "drawing-room comedy with dead bodies." Decidedly not a noir classic, but a classic none-the-less. The movie is filled with ridiculous characters and unlikely plot twists; in the middle of this swirling hurricane stands semi-retired detective Nick Charles (Powell) with a drink in his hand, a witticism on his tongue, and a sage expression on his face.

The wit and delivery of The Thin Man helped and not hindered by a steady flow of drinks can not be topped. William Powell and Myrna Loy are so electric as Nick and Nora Charles that it comes as no surprise this film lead to five sequels (even more incredible is that the film was shot in a mere two weeks). The two are a playfully in love couple living the high life with their willful and adorable pup Asta; the two seem to not have a care in the world or to take anything serious.
Shot during the Great Depression the film plays up one of the main purposes behind all movies: escapism. Beautiful people seem to flit across the scene from one stylish locale to another, always dressed impeccably and always ready for a good time. The series of murders might be the major plot of the film and Nick Charles may occasionally act like a detective, but it's really a movie about living stylishly and having a laugh...

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