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The Mask of Dimitrios (1944)

 -  Crime | Drama | Film-Noir  -  1 July 1944 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 1,762 users  
Reviews: 43 user | 20 critic

Mystery writer Cornelius Leyden becomes intrigued when the murdered body of a vicious career criminal washes up in the Bosphorus.

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Title: The Mask of Dimitrios (1944)

The Mask of Dimitrios (1944) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Mr. Peters
Zachary Scott ...
Dimitrios Makropoulos
Faye Emerson ...
Irana Preveza
...
Cornelius Leyden
Victor Francen ...
Wladislaw Grudek
Steven Geray ...
Karel Bulic
Florence Bates ...
Madame Elise Chavez
Eduardo Ciannelli ...
Marukakis (as Edward Ciannelli)
Kurt Katch ...
Colonel Haki
Marjorie Hoshelle ...
Anna Bulic
Georges Metaxa ...
Hans Werner
...
Mr. Pappas
Monte Blue ...
Abdul Dhris
David Hoffman ...
Konrad
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Storyline

A mystery writer named Leyden is intrigued by the tale of notorious criminal Dimitrios Makropolous, whose body was found washed up on the shore in Istanbul. He decides to follow the career of Dimitrios around Europe, to learn more about the man. Along the way, he is joined by mysterious Mr. Peters, who has his own motivation. Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Fabulous Tale OF A MAN OF MYSTERY!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 July 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Mask of Dimitrios  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For a scene taking place in the Parisian subway,which was rebuilt and filmed on Warner sound stage,the name of subway station "Balard" is misspelled and written "Ballard". See more »

Quotes

Mr. Peters: What did you think of him?
Cornelius Leyden: It was Dimitrios all right - ruthless and primitive. I was afraid of him.
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in It Takes a Thief: Guess Who's Coming to Rio (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

Perfidia
(uncredited)
Music by Alberto Domínguez
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Dangerous Duo
1 August 2004 | by (Forest Ranch, CA) – See all my reviews

A Dutch mystery writer tries to strip away THE MASK OF DIMITRIOS Makropoulos to discover the truth about his wicked life.

From Warner Bros. and director Jean Negulesco comes this well-produced version of Eric Ambler's novel A Coffin For Dimitrios. Thickly plotted and jammed with intriguing characters, the film will amply reward the attentive viewer. Moving quickly across Europe (Istanbul, Athens, Sofia, Geneva, Belgrade & Paris) the plot never lags as it adds details to the plots & crimes of Dimitrios. The final culmination of his nefarious career is most justified and quite satisfying.

Diminutive Peter Lorre (undeserving of the pitiful 4th place billing he receives) brings his unique talents to the role of the Dutch author. Feisty and tenacious, he lets nothing get in his way as he ferrets out the details for which he's searching. Massive Sydney Greenstreet portrays the mysterious stout gentleman who arranges an alliance with Lorre to seek information about the violently deceased Dimitrios. Looking somewhat like a malevolently cheerful Buddha, Greenstreet literally dominates most of his scenes with his enormous talent, his great bulk and expressive eyes put to most effective dramatic use. Teamed with Lorre, the pair make a compelling duo--like a sinister Laurel & Hardy--and are most entertaining to watch. They would appear in nine films together; this was one of their best.

The movie's only real drawback is the complete absence of Greenstreet & Lorre during the lengthy flashback sequences. But this is but a minor quibble as the rest of the cast comport themselves quite well.

As the despicable Dimitrios, Zachary Scott manages to divest himself of any hint of the heroic, while retaining a certain dash and smarmy charm about his persona. Faye Emerson, the picture's leading lady, has actually a rather limited role, but she makes good use of her screen time as a Sofia nightclub owner with a sad story to tell Lorre.

The large supporting cast features a considerable number of European character actors. Especially noteworthy are Kurt Katch as a Turkish police detective; Eduardo Ciannelli as a helpful Bulgarian reporter; Victor Francen as a cat-loving spy master living in Switzerland; and Steven Geray as a most unfortunate Yugoslavian governmental clerk. Chatty Florence Bates livens up her one short scene as an American society hostess living in Istanbul.

Set in 1938, the film was produced during World War Two. It is a fine example of how movie magic and back lot technology could transport an audience to a temporarily inaccessible geographic location.


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