|Fig 1 - The Maltese Falcon Poster|
Of all the films on the IMDB 'Top 250' list I have reviewed so far, I am quite certain that none have tested my patience as much as The Maltese Falcon. By no means am I in pursuit of explosive thrills or dazzling special effects. I simply want to invest myself in characters. However, despite some decent performances, I found everyone in the film to be profoundly void of likability. That said, this isn't a true detriment to the film, as it's convoluted and ultimately uninspired plot gives the characters very little to engross themselves in. The story seems to juggle the murder and the falcon retrieval in a very unbalanced way, often shifting tonally with bursts of joyful music right after a tense moment. It's poster and trailer both boast "explosive" storytelling in the gripping tale of a lost relic, but it all essentially amounts to scene after scene of monotonous dialogue. When made interesting with well-rounded characters, dialogue-heavy films can be enthralling. Take for instance 12 Angry Men (1957) or Reservoir Dogs (1992), which prove that great scripts and characters can turn a stagnant situation into a captivating one. Sadly enough, this just isn't the case here.
|Fig 2 - Sam Spade|
The film may have been a cornerstone in the 'detective noir' genre, but overall I just found it a tedious watch. So much so that I could hardly find anything constructive to write, positive or negative, as I was frankly bored for the most-part. As a lover of cinema I can appreciate the use of contrast and some interesting cinematography, but overall I could only recommend this as a low-budget Bond knock-off.
Fig. 1 The Maltese Falcon Poster (1941) From: The Maltese Falcon - Directed by: John Huston
Fig. 2 The Maltese Falcon Poster (1941) From: The Maltese Falcon - Directed by: John Huston