The Maltese Falcon (BBC Radio Crimes)

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What to expect

It’s San Francisco, 1928, and Sam Spade is a wisecracking, womanising Private Investigator. Missing husbands and unfaithful wives are his usual stock-in-trade, but when the beautifully distressed Miss Wonderley calls he gets involved in a dangerous caper most people would run a mile from. Miss Wonderley asks Sam’s partner, Miles Archer, to shadow Floyd Thursby, whom she maintains has kidnapped her sister. But then Archer is shot dead, and Miss Wonderley’s story turns out to be a lie – just like her name, which is actually Brigid O’Shaughnessy. And Miss O’Shaughnessy keeps on lying. But one thing’s for sure: she does know about the Maltese Falcon, an ancient statuette which has attracted more than one interested party. With a bunch of heavies at his elbow and the police on his tail, Sam needs to think fast if he’s to outlive the person who killed his partner…

Critics Review

  • in this terrific adaptation of Hammett’s gangsters-and-molls classic, Tom Wilkinson as the macho, cynical, ruthless private eye Sam Spade is better than Humphrey Bogart

    The Guardian

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