My 150 Favorite Movies - #41
The directorial debut of John Huston, The Maltese Falcon is quintessential film noir at it's noirest. The plot, based on a novel by Dashiell Hammett, concerns a San Francisco private detective searching for the killer of his dead partner, and his dealings with various unscrupulous characters who are all bent on obtaining a priceless statue of a bird. An all-star cast of character actors led by Humphrey Bogart in the lead, includes Sydney Greenstreet (making his film debut), Peter Lorre and Mary Astor as the requisite femme fatale. Chock-full of quotable lines, including "keep on riding me and they're gonna be picking iron out of your liver," "when you're slapped you'll take it and like it," "the stuff that dreams are made of," and my favorite: "I'm a man who likes talking to a man who likes to talk."