This longish (over six minutes) recap scene in The Big Sleep explains what’s already happened for those who may be lost or confused. And yes, Phillip Marlowe‘s meeting in the District Attorney’s office obviously fits the very definition of what a good film isn’t supposed to do — i.e., tell rather than show. Which is why it wasn’t included in the final 1946 version.

And yet the general consensus is that The Big Sleep is one of the most convoluted, perplexing, nearly-impossible-to-follow crime films ever made (even co-screenwriter William Faulkner was unsure about who’d done what), so I actually wouldn’t have minded if this scene had been left in.

As Big Sleep aficionados know, the sexually suggestive restaurant scene between Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall (i.e., trading double entendres about horse racing) replaced (a) the District Attorney’s office scene plus (b) Rutledge/Bacall coming to Marlowe’s office a second time.