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Confidential Agent (1945)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 578 users  
Reviews: 21 user | 10 critic

During the Spanish Civil War, a republican courier travels to England to try and buy coal. He meets with an amount of local hostility, while his life is at risk from those on the fascist ... See full summary »

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Rose Cullen
Victor Francen ...
Licata
Wanda Hendrix ...
Else
George Coulouris ...
Captain Currie
...
Contreras
Katina Paxinou ...
Mrs. Melandez
John Warburton ...
Neil Forbes
Holmes Herbert ...
Lord Benditch
Dan Seymour ...
Mr. Muckerji
Art Foster ...
Chauffeur
...
Mr. Brigstock
Lawrence Grant ...
Lord Fetting
...
Dr. Bellows
George Zucco ...
Detective Geddes
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Storyline

During the Spanish Civil War, a republican courier travels to England to try and buy coal. He meets with an amount of local hostility, while his life is at risk from those on the fascist side. Support comes from an unlikely if attractive quarter. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

10 November 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Agent secret  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Wanda Hendrix. See more »

Goofs

In a scene late in the film, where Lauren Bacall and Charles Boyer are driving in the car, one angle shows a two-tone steering wheel (amber on top, ivory on the bottom/grip side); but in the next shot, a closeup on the steering wheel, the entire steering wheel is ivory. See more »

Quotes

Contreras: You can go home now, your job is finished.
Luis Denard: And leave it to you to sell out? Oh no, I can trust myself - I do not trust you. I intend to complete the mission myself.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dangerous Edge: A Life of Graham Greene (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Tip-Toe thru' the Tulips with Me
(uncredited)
Music by Joseph A. Burke
Lyrics by Al Dubin
Played and sung in the ship's bar
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Boyer Isn't Spanish and Bacall Isn't British, Yet...
2 August 2005 | by (Minneapolis, MN) – See all my reviews

I watch a lot of films, good, bad and indifferent; there is usually something of interest to fixate upon, even if it is only set design, or the reliable labor of a good character actor, or the fortuitous laughter that emerges from watching ineptitude captured forever.

However, I was quite pleasantly surprised by this film, one I had never seen before. Graham Greene has been translated into film many times of course, in such masterpieces as "Thin Man" and in lesser vehicles. "Confidential Agent" is one of those lesser vehicles, yet it manages to get me somewhere anyway, despite lackluster direction, the incongruity of Bacall and Boyer's depictions as (respectively) British and Spanish, and the almost complete non-existence of any chemistry between the two leads. In some ways, this last "problem" actually begins to work in the film's favor, for how can love really blossom in the killing atmosphere of fascism and capitalism meeting about one person's tragedy? The most compelling aspect of the film arises directly from Greene's complex and guilt-ridden psychology, which pervades the film. I know some see the deliberate pacing here as dull, and I can understand that. Yet I found that plodding accentuated rather than detracted from what is a claustrophobic world. I was compelled to watch, not by any great acting (although Boyer is marvelous as usual, managing to convey a rich mixture of world-weariness, tragedy, hope, and fervor with his magnificent voice and yearning eyes), but by the down-spiraling rush of one man's slim hopes against a world of oppression and money. What is a thief? What good is love in the face of death? Where does mere profit-taking end and exploitation begin? The film does not rise to the level of art, and thus cannot hope to answer such questions, but it is much more than mere entertainment, and its murders and guilts are very grimly drawn. The lack of glitz, of "bubble," of narrative "bounce" help to make this movie very worthwhile.

And there is no happy ending, for history wrote the ending.


12 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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