When talking about classic detective comedy movies, there’s no better series you can find than The Thin Man Series. The series was produced over the course of 13 years, from 1934 to 1947. They follow a former detective, Nick, and his wife, Nora Charles, in their wild, often hilarious adventures. The first film was based on the novel The Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett.
The series of films took off, and despite over 80 years passing since the first film, The Thin Man is still very popular and amusing to watch. The technology wasn’t as great, so it might seem a little rustic, but I’m positive you’ll enjoy the series. Before you start, here’s everything you need to know about The Thin Man movies in order, how many are there, and more.
How Many The Thin Man Movies Are There?
There are six The Thin Man movies in total, spanning from 1934 to 1947. The first movie is titled The Thin Man and is based on a novel of the same name, written by Dashiell Hammett. The movie series follows former detective Nick and his spouse Nora Charles through adventures filled with crime, comedy, mystery, and thrill.
The Thin Man Movies In Order: At A Glance
As I’ve mentioned, there are six The Thin Man movies. Chronologically, they go as follows:
- The Thin Man (1934)
- After The Thin Man (1936)
- Another Thin Man (1939)
- Shadow Of The Thin Man (1941)
- The Thin Man Goes Home (1944)
- Song Of The Thin Man (1947)
The series goes from brilliant to very good, but every film has its own magic, and the two main stars, Nick and Nora (portrayed by William Powell and Myrna Loy), are phenomenal.
What Is The Best Way To Watch The Thin Man Movies?
The best way to watch The Thin Man movies is by order of their release, starting with The Thin Man (1934) and finishing with Song of the Thin Man (1947). The plots happen chronologically, too, although they are not as tightly connected, so you can watch the films separately, too, if you wish.
The Thin Man Movies In Order: By Release Date
1. The Thin Man (1934)
Synopsis: “After a four-year absence, one-time detective Nick Charles returns to New York with his new wife Nora and their dog Asta. Nick re-connects with many of his old cronies, several of whom are eccentric characters, to say the least. He’s also approached by Dorothy Wynant whose inventor father Clyde Wynant is suspected of murdering her father’s mistress (his former secretary).
Her father had left on a planned trip some months before and she has had no contact with him. Nick isn’t all that keen on resuming his former profession, but egged-on by wife Nora, who thinks this all very exciting, he agrees to help. He solves the case, announcing the identity of the killer at a dinner party for all of the suspects.”
2. After The Thin Man (1036)
Synopsis: “Now back in San Francisco after their holiday in New York, Nick and Nora find themselves trying to solve another mystery. It’s New Year’s Eve and they are summoned to dinner at Nora’s elderly, and very aristocratic, family. There they find that cousin Selma’s husband Robert has been missing for three days.
Nick reluctantly agrees to look for him but the case takes a twist when Robert is shot and Selma is accused of murder. Several other murders occur but eventually Nick gathers everyone into the same room to reveal the identity of the killer.”
3. Another Thin Man (1939)
Synopsis: “In this adaptation of Dashiell Hammett’s “The Farewell Murder”, Nick and Nora (and their dog Asta) visit the estate of Col. MacFay, who is being threatened by a mysterious man wanting revenge for a past injustice. When MacFay is murdered, that man is the obvious suspect – maybe too obvious.”
4. Shadow Of The Thin Man (1941)
Synopsis: “Nick and Nora’s hopes for a pleasant afternoon at the local race track are dashed when a jockey is found shot dead in the locker room. Nick’s friend Lt. Abrams wants him to help out but Nick is enjoying the good life too much to get involved.
However, he is subsequently approached by Major Scully to look into corruption and the role of organized crime in gambling. Others are killed but in the end, Nick gathers all of the suspects into a room and identifies the killer.”
5. The Thin Man Goes Home (1944)
Synopsis: “Nick and Nora head to Nick’s hometown of Sycamore Springs to spend some time with his parents. His father, a prominent local physician, was always a bit disappointed with Nick’s choice of profession in particular and his lifestyle in general.
With Nick’s arrival, however, the towns folk, including several of the local criminal element, are convinced that he must be there on a case despite his protestations that he’s just there for rest and relaxation. When someone is shot dead on his doorstep, however, Nick finds himself working on a case whether he wants to or not.”
6. Song Of The Thin Man (1947)
Synopsis: “Nick and Nora Charles are asked by Phil Brant and Janet Thayar, who have just eloped, to help them after band leader Tommy Drake is killed at a society dance which Nick and Nora also attended. The police are looking to arrest Brant for the murder and while he claims he’s innocent, Nick isn’t too keen on having him in the house and turns him over to the police.
As they look into the case, Nick and Nora learn that Drake wasn’t very well-liked and there are actually several people who benefited from his death. Drake owed money to loan shark Al Amboy, and Janet’s father disliked Brant and may have set him up.
Drake’s girlfriend may have been having a fling with clarinetist Buddy Hollis, and he and Drake had a fist fight on stage during the festivities. Nick arranges for another party on the same boat where Nora notices something quite peculiar about one of the guest’s jewelry.”
Where To Watch The Thin Man Movies?
The Thin Man is available for rent on several platforms, such as Google Play, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, and Vudu. You can also find it on Redbox and DirecTV. You can also stream it on TCM or The Criterion Channel.
Do You Need To Watch The Thin Man Movies In Order?
Watching The Thin Man movies in order isn’t necessary to understand the plot, but it is the best way to watch the films that way due to some minor plot references and overall timeline of the events.
Are The Thin Man Movies Connected?
All The Thin Man movies are connected with the main two characters, Nick and Nora Charles. However, the plots of each movie are only loosely connected with Nick and Nora, but each movie has its own murder or mystery to be solved.
Will There Be More The Thin Man Movies?
As it turns out, almost 90 years after its initial release, The Thin Man might just be getting a remake in the near future. Initially, the news about a potential remake surfaced in 2011 that would star Johnny Depp as Nick Charles and get paired up with Rob Marshall as the director, a guy Depp previously worked with in The Pirates of the Caribbean movies.
However, things halted when Marshall chose to direct Into The Woods instead. Now, ten years later, rumors started spreading again. There’s no official confirmation, though, so for now, another Thin Man movie is just a rumor until the studio confirms it’s back on.