REVIEWED
6/8/03

STORY



LOOK

Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid
Director: Carl Reiner
Year: 1982
TRT: 1:29


A pretty mixed bag here, really. As a tribute to the classic gumshoe movies of the 40's and 50's, it actually uses footage from the films mixed in as part of the plot. So Humphrey Bogart, Veronica Lake, and a load of others all make an appearance in some way or another. Kinda clever, doesn't always work. Steve Martin plays the private detective, and while his dramatic acting is okay, it's the humorous elements that seem a bit out of place at times (or is it vice-versa?).

Rigby Reardon is a private eye that is hired to look into the somewhat dubious death of a noted scientist, philanthropist, and CHEESEmaker by his daughter. There's plenty of twists and turns that are expected of this kind of genre movie, with Reardon fighting the fact that he's falling in love with his beautiful client all the while.

This is Steve Martin's second of four films with director Carl Reiner (the others being The Jerk, The Man With Two Brains, All of Me), some pretty lite fare that helped (?) Steve Martin from sinking into post-SNL obscurity. You look at the movies most of today's Saturday Night Live people have been putting out, and can make some pretty adequate comparisons (though the more recent ones seems to stink a bit more, but I can't say for sure, I avoid them like a Jean-Claude Van Damme movie). If your up for a 40's-style detective movie with a bit of low-brow humor thrown in, this is the movie for you.

Great Scene: Well, not altogether great, but it is humorous, when detective Reardon prepares a batch of his coffee.

DVD Notes: Decent transfer by Universal, includes a brief history on the production, bios, and the trailer.