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The Singing Detective Poster

The Singing Detective (1986)


Reworking material from his first novel, "Hide and Seek" (1973), and folding this into a prismatic blend of autobiographical details, popular music and 1940s film noir, Dennis Potter delivered a...

IMDb
GenreDrama, Musical, Mystery Number of episodes 6 Latest available episode Cast and crewPatrick Malahide, Joanne Whalley, David Ryall, Gerard Horan, George Rossi, Janet Suzman, Jim Carter, Bill Paterson, William Speakman, Simon Chandler, Irving Berlin, Sammy Cahn, Harold Arlen, Johnny Mercer, Richard Rodgers, Cole Porter, Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Hoagy Carmichael, Show All
Full description Reworking material from his first novel, "Hide and Seek" (1973), and folding this into a prismatic blend of autobiographical details, popular music and 1940s film noir, Dennis Potter delivered a drama now regarded as a 20th-century masterwork. Detective novelist Philip Marlow (Michael Gambon) suffers from the crippling disease of psoriatic arthropathy. Confined to a hospital bed, Marlow mentally rewrites his early Chandleresque thriller, "The Singing Detective," with himself in the title role, drifting into a surreal 1945 fantasy of spies and criminals, along with vivid memories of a childhood in the Forest of Dean. As past events and 1940s songs surface in his subconscious, Marlow's voyage of self-discovery provides a key to conquering his illness, while his noir-styled hallucinations evoke the Philip Marlowe of Chandler's "Murder, My Sweet" (1944), starring Dick Powell, who later became a "singing detective" on radio's "Richard Diamond, Private Detective" (1949), crooning to girlfriend Helen Asher at the end of each episode.

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