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Walter Woolf King,
A Nazi spy operating as an optometrist on the San Francisco waterfront discovers that his code book, which also has the names of his fellow Nazi agents and saboteurs, has been stolen. His attempts to track it down before it falls into the hands of the authorities result in a trail of murder and blackmail. Written by
At the beginning of the film Karl Decker, the optometrist, is robbed by the waterfront. Both his code-book and a list of his fellow agents are stolen from him. It is inconceivable that any spy would carry these items about with him in his pockets as he walked the streets. See more »
There's not much to say about Waterfront. It's a typical PRC production with the usual cheap sets and corny dialog and a cast of forgettable players for the most part. It's also a product of its times, a World War II era espionage film.
But this one has a pair of acting professionals who in their time managed to create entertainment out of less than this. J. Carrol Naish and John Carradine are a pair of Nazi spies and Naish does an incredibly stupid thing. He gets robbed of his code book while carrying it on his person at the same time Carradine is over from Berlin on a mission.
Unfortunately Carradine can't even find out what the mission is without the code book. So even after getting back with a couple of murders the mission whatever it was still can't get done. Carradine and Naish really loath each other and spend the entire film criticizing what each other did.
You have to credit these two. John Carradine with that lean and sinister countenance and that menacing voice and J. Carrol Naish that most chameleon of players who could blend into a role of any ethnic and racial type imaginable. Waterfront becomes a great exercise in watching a pair of the best professionals working to make a really laughable film somewhat entertaining.
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