The Detective (1968)

The Detective Poster

Police detective Joe Leland investigates the murder of a gay man.

"The Detective" is a fascinating 1968 criminal offense thriller movie adapted from Roderick Thorp's effective and renowned novel. Directed by Gordon Douglas and starring the iconic Frank Sinatra as the lead actor, the film checks out tales of murder, corruption, and political malfeasance through the eyes of a hard-boiled detective. The storyline provides not only an engrossing murder mystery but also dives deep into the protagonist's flawed personality and marital concerns, which adds an unique, layered touch to the narrative.

Plot Summary
Frank Sinatra offers an engaging performance as Detective Sergeant Joe Leland, a knowledgeable, virtuous police, facing an important homicide investigation, the ethical double-dealings within his precinct, and his falling apart marital relationship. The story unfolds when a rich homosexual is brutally killed, and Joe Leland is assigned to the high-stakes case. As Leland begins to dig much deeper, he discovers an overwelming string of corruption, sex, and violence that extends far beyond the preliminary criminal activity.

Leland's expert life is similarly matched by a disorderly personal life that involves his separated better half Karen, depicted by Lee Remick. The movie strongly highlights their disintegrated marital relationship, depicting styles of cheating and mental illness. Regardless of the turbulence, it ends up being clear that Leland still brings feelings for Karen, additional making complex the story.

Excellent Performances
Sinatra embodies the subtleties of the gritty detective completely, depicting a character who remains moral and forthright regardless of being encompassed by corruption and deceit. Lee Remick likewise sticks out with her performance as the spiraling Karen, bringing to life the problems of a stopped working marriage and showcasing the battles of mental illness. The film is likewise well supported by the performances of Jacqueline Bisset, Jack Klugman, and Robert Duvall, who add additional depth to the plot.

Critical Reception
"The Detective" was considered fairly bold for its time due to its frank discussion of homosexuality and vivid representation of violent crimes. It offered a truthful and unflinching look into some aspects of the 1960s hardly ever illustrated in movies of the age. Consequently, it got combined actions. While slammed for its explicitness by some, it was praised for its raw portrayal of social themes and ethical decay by others.

With its detailed plot and effective efficiencies, it attracted audiences and carried out fairly well at package office, further strengthening Sinatra's reputation as a flexible actor. Likewise, it's worth mentioning that "The Detective" applied a substantial influence on subsequent police dramas by developing lots of narrative and stylistic aspects that would end up being genre staples.

"The Detective" is a departure from the traditional investigator thriller genre. It's more than just a murder examination; it reflects the personal devils of the protagonist and the widespread corruption within the system. The movie handles to offer an interesting look at social concerns and moral corruption in the late 1960s, intertwining an intriguing plot with profound styles, making it a must-watch for fans of crime dramas and Frank Sinatra.

Top Cast

  • Frank Sinatra (small)
    Frank Sinatra
    Det. Sgt. Joe Leland
  • Lee Remick (small)
    Lee Remick
    Karen Wagner Leland
  • Ralph Meeker (small)
    Ralph Meeker
  • Jack Klugman (small)
    Jack Klugman
    Dave Schoenstein
  • Horace McMahon (small)
    Horace McMahon
    Capt. Tom Farrell
  • Lloyd Bochner (small)
    Lloyd Bochner
    Dr. Wendell Roberts
  • William Windom (small)
    William Windom
    Colin MacIver
  • Tony Musante (small)
    Tony Musante
    Felix Tesla
  • Al Freeman Jr. (small)
    Al Freeman Jr.
    Robbie Loughlin
  • Robert Duvall (small)
    Robert Duvall
  • Pat Henry