Books and Movies Reviews

The Big Sleep

Marlowe's Mystery
In Raymond Chandler's novel The Big Sleep the main character, Phillip Marlowe, is a private investigator hired by the Sternwoods to solve a blackmail conspiracy.He is successful in his crime solving, but in his success, Marlowe raises many mysteries or questions.The crimes that he solves raise a moral and ethical debate on how far he should go to protect the Sternwoods or whether he should obey every law exactly.
Marlowe is hired to stop the blackmailing that is happening to Carmen, the daughter of General Sternwood.It is safe to say that he accomplishes this very well.In doing so, he stumbles on Carmen in A.G. Geiger's house.Normally this would be a big deal, but Geiger is dead.Also, the pictures that he took of Carmen are missing.Marlowe describes the scene when he thinks, "No plateholder.I took hold of his limp chilling hand and rolled him a little. No plateholder.I didn't like this development." (38).Marlowe takes to the tasks of solving this murder and the blackmail.He finds out that Joe Brody has the pictures.In thinking of his clientsfirst, Marlowe goes to Brody's apartment.He manages to get the pictures back right before Brody gets shot, dead on the spot.Marlowe chases after the killer and finds out that it is Carol Lundgren, Geiger's "special" friend.Marlowe makes Carol go with him to Geiger's house to find out the whole story.After learning everything from Carol, Marlowe takes him to the D.A. and tells him about everything that has happened.He gives the D.A. all the evidence he has, except for the "couple of personal matters.I intend to keep on leaving them out" (110). Thus ends the sleuthing of Phillip Marlowe temporarily.
As stated in the opening paragraph, Marlowe solves the crimes but he opens up a mystery.The mystery is whether or not Marlowe is ethical in protecting the Sternwoods.Marlowe is …


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