07 fevereiro 2006

Acme Book Store

Across the street from the bookstore, Marlowe waits for Geiger to materialize, viewing the store from the front window of the Acme Book Store with a spectacled, antiquarian bookseller clerk (Dorothy Malone) who is quickly charmed:

Clerk: Is there something I can do for you?

Marlowe: Would you do me a very small favor?

Clerk: I don't know. It depends on the favor.

Marlowe: Do you know Geiger's bookstore across the street?

Clerk: I think I may have passed it.

Marlowe: Do you know Geiger by sight?

Clerk: Well, I ...

Marlowe: What does he look like?

Clerk: Wouldn't it be easy enough to go across the street and ask to see him?

Marlowe: I've already done that...Do you know anything about rare books?

Clerk: You could try me.

Marlowe: Would you happen to have a Ben-Hur 1860, Third Edition with a duplicated line on page one-sixteen? Or a Chevalier Audubon 1840?

(She searches her listings and bibliographies)

Clerk: Nobody would. There isn't one.

Marlowe: The girl in Geiger's bookstore didn't know that.

Clerk: Oh, I see. You begin to interest me - vaguely.

Marlowe: I'm a private dick on a case. Perhaps I'm asking too much, although it doesn't seem too much to me somehow.

Clerk: Well, Geiger's in his early forties, medium height, fattish, soft all over, Charlie Chan mustache, well-dressed, wears a black hat, affects a knowledge of antiques and hasn't any, and, oh yes, I think his left eye is glass.

Marlowe: You'd make a good cop.

As a heavy rain begins to fall, he proposes that they have a drink of rye (from a bottle in his pocket) while he waits for Geiger to come out - with a suggestive line: "I'd rather get wet in here." The independent bookseller pulls the shade and closes an hour early, removes her eyeglasses and lets her hair down coyly: "It looks like we're closed for the rest of the afternoon." She also offers two cups for their drinking. Marlowe can't believe the quick transformation, and greets her with an exaggerated "Hello," before they enjoy an afternoon dalliance together - suggested by the film's fadeout.

The Big Sleep