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William K. Howard
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During World War I, believing her fiance to be dead, a young ballerina loses her job and is forced to turn to prostitution. From there, things only get worse for her in this tragic, heart-wrenching, love story.
Madeline Goddard is a smart young woman who owns a fashionable dress shop in neutral Sweden during World War One. Though she is grateful to avoid the fighting, the courageous and stunningly pretty Madeline feels she should be doing more for her native France. She volunteers to work as an intelligence agent, smuggling maps and other documents within the fashionable garments she ships to wealthy customers in London. Madeline's activities are so successful that British intelligence soon comes to rely on her as their main pipeline for information. At about this time, a British official in Sweden asks her to cultivate the friendship of Baron Karl Von Marwitz, a tall, distinguished-looking German officer who is in charge of counter-espionage activities at the German embassy. Unknown to Madeline, the baron has been sent to Sweden for the express purpose of discovering and eliminating the top British spy who has been smuggling out German war plans. When Madeline and Karl meet, each recognizes... Written by
The story takes place in 1918, but all of Vivien Leigh's fashions and hairstyles, as well as those of the other women in the cast, are strictly up-to-the minute 1937 modes. See more »
Baron Karl Von Marwitz:
So our pretty little dressmaker is a spy! What will people say, an officer of the Kaiser like me and a woman like you, Madeline?
They'll say, the poor girl couldn't help herself.
Baron Karl Von Marwitz:
One false move could mean death for both of us. But death is nothing to what I feel for you.
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Vivien Leigh is beautiful and effective in her role as a spy masquerading as a Parisian dressmaker. There is requisite tension and passion in this thriller loosely-based on the real-life affair of couturiere Madeleine Cheruit and a high-ranking German officer during World War I. Another version of the story of the famous designer and her military lover is told in The Proprietor (1996)starring Jeanne Moreau.
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