Hammett, trying to put his Pinkerton detective days behind him while establishing himself as a writer, and dealing with induced tuberculosis and the alcoholism that will plague him almost to the end of his days, finds himself drawn back into his old life one last time by the irresistible call of friendship and to honor a debt.
On the IMDB:
Hammett: I want two things. One, I want my story back, it's not much but its what I do. And two, I want to be left alone.
Crystal Ling: He was good.
Hammett: He was the best. In his prime.
Hammett: Have you gone simple? They're not gonna let you walk. You know what you're up against, 1, 200 million dollars, the power, the big seam.