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Another Thin Man

The Complete Thin Man Collection

  • The Thin Man
  • After the Thin Man
  • Another Thin Man
  • Shadow of the Thin Man
  • The Thin Man Goes Home
  • Song of the Thin Man
  • Alias Nick and Nora
  • No one could ever accuse the folks in Hollywood of reinventing the wheel when they already have one that gets them where they need to go. The studios' "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" attitude toward sequels has resulted in some pretty uninspired retreads, particularly in recent years (Men in Black II, Legally Blonde II), but back in the '30s, it serendipitously yielded a few more pleasing pictures — including Another Thin Man (1939). Actually the third cinematic outing for married high-society sleuths Nick and Nora Charles (William Powell and Myrna Loy, one of the best on-screen duos in Hollywood history), Another Thin Man doesn't stray too far from the formula established in The Thin Man and After the Thin Man. The Charleses (accompanied this time by baby Nick Jr., as well as talented terrier Asta) have only just arrived in Manhattan when they're summoned to the New Jersey estate of Colonel MacFay (C. Aubrey Smith), the former business partner of Nora's late, wealthy father. The recent reappearance of Phil Church (Sheldon Leonard), a former employee with a serious grudge, has left MacFay afraid for his life, and he wants Nick on the case. But despite the martini-loving gumshoe's best efforts, MacFay ends up dead. It seems like a cut-and-dried case until Nick follows a few hunches and discovers that there's a lot more going on than meets the eye (naturally). Everything comes to a head during a chaotically funny birthday party thrown by some of Nick's former, less-than-savory associates — all now proud fathers as well. Although the mystery quotient is higher here than in the first two Thin Man movies, Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett's witty, fast-paced script (based, like its predecessors, on a detective story by master-of-the-genre Dashiell Hammett) still offers plenty of the series' trademarked effervescent humor in scenes like the baby's party, or the bits in which Nick and Nora flirt at a nightclub and investigate a boarding house together. Even Nick's new penchant for calling Nora "Mommy" can't douse the spark between Powell and Loy, who make every adventure with the Charleses one to remember — or at least drink to. Included in Warner's seven-disc "Thin Man Collection," Another Thin Man features a full-frame black-and-white transfer (1.33:1 OAR) that looks quite good, considering its age. English and French monaural Dolby Digital audio tracks are accompanied by English, Spanish, and French subtitles; extras include the short musical romance "Love on Tap," the vintage cartoon "The Bookworm," and the theatrical trailer. Keep-case.
    —Betsy Bozdech



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