Liam Neeson is Detective Philip Marlowe, Diane Kruger is his client, and François Arnaud is the mysterious disappearance the duo is tracking.
Clare Cavendish (Diane Kruger) visits Marlowe (Liam Neeson) because she needs help. In fact, she worries about the disappearance of her lover Nico Peterson (François Arnaud). In 1939’s Los Angeles, the detective born a century ago under the pen of novelist Raymond Chandler crosses disturbing characters – notably played by Alan Cumming, Danny Huston or Jessica Lange – as Diane Kruger’s physically perfect mother.
So on paper everything is fine. The screenplay was written by Agents Troubles’ William Monahan and is adapted from the 2014 novel The Black-Eyed Blonde by John Banville. Everything is looking promising, especially with Neil Jordan (“Michael Collins”) being secured for production. remembering that Liam Neeson is a great actor). Since the cast of actors is impressive, we tell ourselves that enjoyment is guaranteed.
From the very first minutes, this “Marlowe” proves difficult to digest. Actors put on make-up and feel uncomfortable in the skin of their characters, who declaim their replicas as if on a theater stage, it gets stuck. Is it because Marlowe is now a centenarian? That the shadow of Robert Mitchum or Humphrey Bogart still lingers in the minds of moviegoers? Alas, Liam Neeson and company’s academically – and almost painstakingly – articulated dialogue reeks of mothballs. As is this story that never ends, the ceaseless unfolding – still 114 minutes on the clock – of characters who have nothing to say, an investigation that bogs down, and a finale whose only interest is to indicate the general.
- Damage. A pity.
- Rating: 1.5 out of 5