- Hammett (film)
caption =Hammett DVD cover
Wim Wenders/ Francis Ford Coppola (uncredited)
Francis Ford Coppola American Zoetrope
writer =Joe Gores (novel)
Thomas Pope (adaptation)
Frederic Forrest Peter Boyle Marilu Henner Roy Kinnear
music = John Barry
Janice Hampton Marc Laub Robert Q. Lovett Randy Roberts
Orion Pictures Warner Bros.
released = May 1982 (
Cannes Film Festival)
runtime = 95 min
language = English
imdb_id = 0085640
"Hammett" is a 1982 homage to noir films and pulp fiction directed by
Wim Wenders. The film is a fictionalized story about writer Dashiell Hammett, based on the novel of the same name by Joe Gores.
Hammett, trying to put his Pinkerton detective days behind him while establishing himself as a writer, and dealing with induced tuberculosis and the alcoholism that will plague him almost to the end of his days, finds himself drawn back into his old life one last time by the irresistible call of friendship and to honor a debt.
German director Wenders was hired by
Francis Ford Coppolato direct this film, which was to be his American debut feature. "But," according to one source, "by the time the final version was released in 1982, only 30 percent of Wenders' footage remained, and the rest was completely reshot by Coppola, whose mere 'executive producer' credit is just a technicality." [cite web | title = Hammett review | author = Noel Murray | url = http://www.avclub.com/content/node/42688 | publisher = The Onion A.V. Club | date = 2005-11-16 | accessdate = 2008-03-31] Wenders made a short film called " Reverse Angle" documenting his disputes with Coppola surrounding the making of "Hammett". As the A.V. Club review states, "A Coppola or Wenders commentary track might have sorted things out a bit—or at least settled an old score—but the bare-bones DVD release leaves viewers with a fascinating mess." [cite web | title = Hammett review | author = Noel Murray | url = http://www.avclub.com/content/node/42688 | publisher = The Onion A.V. Club | date = 2005-11-16 | accessdate = 2008-03-31] The reviewer, though, never says what the source of his information is, and the question of the degree and nature of Coppola's involvement in the directing of the film remains open.
Actors Forrest and Henner were married during the long production of the film, then divorced shortly after in 1983.
Peter Boyle took over the role of Jimmy Ryan from
Brian Keith, who left allegedly because the lengthy production conflicted with other commitments. Keith can be seen in some long shots in the film. [ [http://www.zoetrope.com/zoe_films.cgi?action=show_one&film_id=21 Synopsis of the film and its production at Zoetrope Studios site] ]
A number of actors from the "Golden Age" of Hollywood were cast in the film, including
Hank Worden, Royal Dano, and Elisha Cook, Jr.(who played Wilmer the gunsel in John Huston's 1941 film The Maltese Falcon).
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.