A brand new BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of a classic Raymond Chandler mystery featuring private eye, Philip Marlowe. Marlowe is now married, living in the resort town of Poodle Springs. Once again, he sets himself up as an investigator and soon finds himself in the middle of blackmail and murder.
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The performances by each actor were low-key and subtle where appropriate, and energetic and dramatic where that was appropriate; there were no schmaltzy, overly melodramatic performances. The sound effects created a convincing atmosphere and environment that completely drew me in.
Of course the main character, Philip Marlowe, is the one who speaks in each scene and speaks directly to you, the listener.
I have read all of Raymond Chandler's novels and short stories and seen the movies, The Big Sleep and The Long Goodbye, the BBC's series on Raymond Chandler's works brought a really enjoyable balance between reading his works where you use your imagination to flesh out scenes and action, and movies where everything is done for you.
I don't have any other performances by other actors doing Philip Marlowe so I can't compare Toby Stephens to another actor but I can say that Stephens does a beautiful job: I bought the entire BBC/Raymond Chandler/Toby Stephens series offered by Audible.com and enjoy each one.
No, not a particular moment. I enjoyed the whole performance.
Even though these performances were abridged from Chandler's original written works, I did not miss any deleted lines and scenes nor could I tell. Wish each one was longer and wish there were more.
FORTY SOMETHING THUG FOR HIRE WHO ENJOYS A GOOD BOOK.
ROBERT PARKER TOOK RAYMOND CHANDLER'S UNFINISHED MANUSCRIPT AND PUT SOME POLISH TO IT AND SRVED US UP THE LAST OF THE MARLOW STORIES; AND FOR THE MOST PART IT WORKS WONDERFULLY. THOUGH NOWHERE NEAR AS INSIGHTFUL OR COLORFUL AS SOME OF CHANDLER'S EARLY WORKS THIS IS STILL A SOLID EFFORT; AND YOU CAN DEFINETLY FEEL PARKER'S INFLUENCE IN THE DIALOGUE. AS WITH THE OTHER OFFERINGS FOR THE CHANDLER STORIES THIS IS A RADIO STYLE DRAMATIZATION RATHER THAN A STRAIGHT ON READING OF THE MATERIAL. EACH CHARACTER HAS A SEPERATE VOICE, AND ALL ARE WELL ACTED. THE ONLY MISGIVINGS I HAD WAS IN THE CHARACTER OF MARLOW. HAVING BECOME MARRIED TO A RICH WOMAN OF CONSIDERABLE MEANS, MARLOW FEELS LIKE A KEPT MAN AND YAERNS FOR THE INDEPENDANCE OF HIS YOUNGER DAYS; HOWEVER THIS MAKES FOR SOME AWKWARD MOMENTS WHERE MARLOW SEEMED HE HAD A CHIP ON HIS SHOULDER, AND TRUTHFULLY HE ACTED LIKE A JERK TO HIS WIFE THROUGH MOST OF THE STORY. BUT THIS, LIKE THE OTHER DRAMATIZATIONS OF CHANDLER'S STORIES IS AN EXTREMELY EASY AND ENJOYABLE LISTEN.
If you're looking for an old-time story presented as an old-time radio drama, look no further. Detectives were simpler when Raymond Chandler was writing, as were we all. Now, the plot seems to lack sophistication, and although Marlowe was hard-boiled by the standards of the time, he appears rather naive as well as two-dimensional compared to a Spenser or a Lucas Davenport. Robert Parker's efforts in completing the manuscript after Chandler's death were moderately successful, but the book is not as satisfying as some Chandler novels or as any of the pure Parker novels. Also, it is dramatized rather than read, which means it does not fit with the other books in Audible's Robert B. Parker collection.
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