A French intelligence agent becomes embroiled in the Cold War politics first with uncovering the events leading up to the 1962 Cuban Missle Crisis, and then back to France to break up an international Russian spy ring.
Los Angeles aircraft worker Barry Kane evades arrest after he is unjustly accused of sabotage. Following leads, he travels across the country to New York trying to clear his name by exposing a gang of fascist-supporting saboteurs led by apparently respectable Charles Tobin. Along the way, he involves Pat Martin, eventually preventing another major act of sabotage. They finally catch up with Frank Frye, the man who actually committed the act of sabotage at the aircraft factory. Written by
Alfred Hitchcock's original director's cameo was cut by order of the censors. He and his secretary played deaf-mute pedestrians. When Hitch's character made an apparently indecent proposal to her in sign language, she slapped his face. A more conventional cameo in front of a drugstore was substituted. See more »
When Barry Kane is talking to Tobin at Tobin's ranch, Barry lights a pipe with both hands but the next shot shows the pipe only in his right hand. See more »
As I post this comment, IMDb currently rates Alfred Hitchcock's subpar Saboteur a 7.3/10. Personally, I rated it less than half that. Honestly, I can't tell how a movie this bad could've come from what is probably the most consistently good director I know of. I've seen about 10 other Hitch movies from the 30's-60's. Vertigo is thus far my hands down favorite while Saboteur is easily the worst. It's hard to believe that 7 years earlier Hitch used the very same formula in The 39 Steps far more competently. My recommendation would be to see that instead and avoid this like the plague. It's the only Hitchcock movie that I turned off before before the end and have no desire to go back and see the rest. If you must watch it, then rent or borrow. Don't make the mistake I did and buy the DVD on good faith earned through Notorious, Rebecca, Vertigo, Rear Window, etc. Even a master screws up sometimes, I guess.
EDIT: Maybe I was a bit harder on this film than I should've been. It's certainly nowhere near Ed Wood or Manos or anything like that, but there's three reasons I feel I must rate it so low:
1) The name "Hitchcock" brings with it certain expectations of quality. This film delivers on a few of them, but they're way overshadowed by the darn near non-sensical plotting.
2) I want to compensate a bit for all the 8+ ratings this film is getting. Hitchcock is like the John Coltrane of directors. True fans will find reasons to consider anything by him a work of art, but the high rating on IMDb gives more casual movie enthusiasts like myself the impression that this movie is far better than it actually is.
3) I spent $18 on this. Maybe if it'd cost me $5 or even $10 I'd probably be a bit less bitter. ;)
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