Format: TCM on DVR
Director: Dick Richards
I've read the Raymond Chandler novel upon which Farewell, My Lovely (1975) is based a couple of times, and seen the Dick Powell-starring 1944 film adaptation Murder, My Sweet (1944) a handful of times. I do appreciate the 1970's neo-noir movement and the adaptations or interpretations I've seen, but there's always such a layer of 1960's or 1970's-ness all over the films, you feel like they can't get out of their own way making sure you know "we have updated this for modern times".
This movie, however, is a period piece, adhering as close to the source material as possible, with a definite romanticism for the genre, the book and the movies which it inspired. While some updating occurs, the politics of the 1970's are only thinly layered on, and the story does take place just prior to WWII (the novel was released in 1940), but with the not insubstantial casting choice of a 58 year old Robert Mitchum. And, look, you'll never catch me saying a negative thing about Mitchum, but this may be about 15 years too old for the character, no matter who that actor is. The script changes the novel enough to take Mitchum's age into account here and there, and I absolutely get why the filmmakers were thrilled to get him. Mitchum would have been ideal casting for a production from '50-'57.