Director Billy Wilder salutes his idol, Ernst Lubitsch, with this comedy about a middle-aged playboy fascinated by the daughter of a private detective who has been hired to entrap him with the wife of a client.
A frustrated former big-city journalist now stuck working for an Albuquerque newspaper exploits a story about a man trapped in a cave to re-jump start his career, but the situation quickly escalates into an out-of-control circus.
June, 1942. The British Army, retreating ahead of victorious Rommel, leaves a lone survivor on the Egyptian border--Corporal John Bramble, who finds refuge at a remote desert hotel...soon to be German HQ. To survive, Bramble assumes an identity which proves perilous. The new guest of honor is none other than Rommel, hinting of his secret strategy, code-named 'five graves.' And the fate of the British in Egypt depends on whether a humble corporal can penetrate the secret... Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
The city of Cairo features in this movie's title but was not a filming location during the production shoot and is only a minor setting in the movie. See more »
In different shots, the pepper and salt shakers on the table in front of Rommel change positions, inexplicably, as he taunts his captives with his plan. See more »
[checking his guidebook entry about the hotel]
You have a native cook by the name of Berek.
Terek, sir. Terek. Yes, sir. But he ran away this morning. With the British to Alexandria.
[checking the guidebook]
You have a wife.
Oh, yes, sir. Yes. But *she* run away. Yes, sir.
With the British to Alexandria?
No, sir. With a Greek to Casablanca.
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As a teen, during WW II, I saw nearly every war film released. This one is in the top 5. The fact that most of the story was in one locale allowed the various characters to expand. The plot twists were fascinating and the "5 graves" idea was quite believable. I was particularly swept away by Ann Baxter and Peter van Eyck. From that point on I followed her career up to her death. I would have given anything to look like Peter an Eyck. Too bad they nearly always made him the heavy in his movies. I think he had a lot of sex appeal and would have made a terrific love interest in certain films.
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